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New Doppler radar unit being installed in Muscle Shoals (1 Viewer)


KG4KBU

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Corbin, KY
MUSCLE SHOALS — Data provided by a new Doppler weather radar system being installed on a city water tower will be a tremendous help during severe weather events, Colbert County Emergency Management Agency Director Michael Smith said.

The system is being installed on the tower by Huntsville television station WAAY, Muscle Shoals Water Board Manager James Vance said.

"I didn't know anything about it until yesterday," Smith said. "It's news to us, but it's welcome news."

Smith said Emergency Operations Center employees saw the work going on through a camera mounted on a 120-foot tower at the Emergency Management Agency's headquarters in downtown Tuscumbia.

"Being able to access that data from right here would be tremendous," Smith said. "We would have a much clearer picture right at the heart of the storms and not in the dead zone."

Meteorologists and others have said the Shoals lies in a weather radar "dead zone" that sometimes does not detect smaller tornadoes entering the state from the west.

Smith said the Shoals is at the outer edges of radar systems in Memphis, Tennessee, Columbus, Mississippi, and Huntsville.

Vance and the water board were able to negotiate terms for a lease and assist with installation of the unit on the tower, which is near Cox Boulevard.

He said the lease varies and could be as much as $500 per month.

Vance said the radar unit was placed atop the tower on Wednesday, and installation is expected to be completed this week.

"Myself and the board of directors were eager to help out with the project," he said.



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WesL

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I'm so glad to hear this. The Shoals area has needed this for years. I remember WAAY back in the day (totally a dad pun) when Ch. 31 had some kind of radar on an RV or something out that way. Going to see if my buddy Al will join us and chime in on that subject.

Also worth mentioning that @Fred Gossage posted last week about a new radar being installed in Lawrenceburg, TN that would also give good insight to the Shoals area as well.

 

WesL

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Which northwest Alabama TV station had their radar taken out live by the Hackleburg tornado? I wanna say WAFF? I assume that has since been replaced?
It was WAFF but it was actually closer to Athens, AL. It was rebuilt with an upgrade.

Just because you reminded me of it...

 
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487
Location
Madison, WI
I work for a local TV station here. It always rankled me that we don't have our own radar while at least one of our competitors does (its dome is visible across the highway from us). I asked our chief met once why we don't and he said we used to, but it wasn't that good. I have to imagine technology has improved since then, but it seems unlikely our parent company will spring for the bill since despite being in the Midwest, long-track, significant tornadoes are quite rare in southern Wisconsin, especially over the last decade.
 
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