KWO35

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
NOAA Weather Radio Station
KWO35
Noaa all hazards.svg
City of license New York City
Broadcast area New York City Metropolitan Area
Branding NOAA [All Hazards] Weather Radio
Slogan "The Voice Of The National Weather Service"
Frequency 162.550 MHz
Format Weather/Civil Emergency
Language(s) English
Power 750 Watts
Class C
Owner NOAA/National Weather Service
Webcast [1]
Website www.weather.gov/okx

KWO35 (note that the third character is the letter "O", not a numerical zero) (sometimes referred to as New York City All Hazards) is a NOAA Weather Radio (NWR) station that serves the greater New York metropolitan area (which comprises New York City and the surrounding counties and municipalities in the Tri-state area), as well as marine interests from Sandy Hook, New Jersey to Fire island, New York (out to 40 miles from the Atlantic coastline), as well as New York Harbor and western Long Island Sound. The transmitter was originally located atop the RCA building (renamed in 1988 as the GE Building) in Rockefeller Center. Due to Coast Guard interference, the transmitter has been recently moved and is currently being tested atop a building near Times Square. Programming originates from the National Weather Service weather forecast office (WFO) in Upton, New York (located east of New York City, on the grounds of Brookhaven National Laboratory, in central Suffolk County on eastern Long Island).

When operational (read about transmitter issues in the next section), the station broadcasts 24 hours per day on a frequency of 162.55 MHz (one of seven VHF radio frequencies allocated by the U.S. Government for NWR transmissions, known collectively as "weather band"). On modern weather radio receivers, it is often tuned as "Channel 7".

KWO35 broadcasts weather and civil hazards information for the following counties within its coverage area: Bronx, Kings, Nassau, New York, Queens, Rockland, Richmond, [western] Suffolk, and Westchester counties in southeastern New York; Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, [eastern] Sussex, Union, and [eastern] Warren counties in northern and central New Jersey; [southern] Fairfield County in southwestern Connecticut.

In addition to broadcasting routine weather/marine forecasts and conditions, the station will also transmit short term forecasts, special weather statements, advisories, watches and warnings issued by the WFOs in Upton, New York and Mount Holly, New Jersey when hazardous weather conditions threaten the coverage area. In severe weather situations, the NWR Public Alert system may be used to activate specially-equipped weather band receivers, using both Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME) and 1050 Hz alert tones. Radios that are SAME-capable can be configured to sound local alerts only (for specific counties) by programming in the corresponding Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) codes.

Service (Un)reliability, then return[edit]

There have been numerous interruptions in service due to the lack of a backup power supply (most notably during the 2003 blackout) and limited redundancy in communications. [1] [2]

In July 2013, outages became the norm and numerous listeners complained about them. The National Weather Service (NWS) responded by announcing on their radio status page that KWO35's signal was interfering with U.S. Coast Guard radio communications on VHF marine channel 16 (156.800 MHz), which is used by mariners for emergency and distress calls at sea. Accordingly, they announced, it would remain "out of service" until the issue was resolved.

Starting August 2013, the NWS WFO in Upton followed up by posting "public information statements" on their website, explaining that KWO35 would remain off-the-air indefinitely, but at times "may be returned to service intermittently" - and only for the purposes of testing for "interference", for "weekly tests" of the public alert system (normally conducted every Wednesday just after 11:00 AM Eastern (local) time), or for broadcasting hazardous weather messages or alerts during "potentially dangerous weather situations".

On 21 February 2014, the NWS WFO in Upton, NY released a public information statement stating that "AFTER MANY MONTHS OF TROUBLESHOOTING...WE ARE UNABLE TO ISOLATE THE SOURCE OF THE INTERFERENCE PROBLEM. THEREFORE WE ARE PLANNING TO RELOCATE THE TRANSMITTER. RELOCATION WILL TAKE AT LEAST SIX MONTHS." [3]

On 3 March 2014, the The Wall Street Journal featured an article about the interference issues and reported that NOAA does, indeed, intend to move the transmitter. They repeated the NOAA claim that this would take another six months. [4]

Three weeks later, on 25 March 2014, KWO35 resumed service, transmitting from a different location (near Times Square). However, since it was only for testing at that time, the transmitter was operating on a Degraded Mode (Indicates transmitter is experiencing a temporary degradation of service). The NWS WFO in Upton, NY released a public information statement on March 26 declaring that "AFTER MANY MONTHS OF TROUBLESHOOTING FREQUENCY INTERFERENCE ISSUES...IT WAS DETERMINED TO RELOCATE THE TRANSMITTER TO A NEW LOCATION. THE TRANSMITTER IS CURRENTLY BEING TESTED NEAR TIMES SQUARE IN ORDER TO DETERMINE IF THE INTERFERENCE CONTINUES" and that "KWO-35 LISTENERS ARE ENCOURAGED TO PROVIDE FEEDBACK ON THE BROADCAST TRANSMISSION WHILE IT'S BEING TESTED FOR INTERFERENCE." [5][6]

(As a misc. data point, this writer listened to the transmission beginning at 23:45 of March 26 for the next half hour. The reason for the lengthy monitoring was that the signal was scratchy [worse than the previous one had been] and I was using an analog tuner and was unsure whether I was hearing KWO-35 or one of the other local stations. It wasn't until the top of the hour that they ID'ed themselves.)

The following week, on April 5, 2014, the NOAA Weather Radio Outages page was updated with news that during the testing period, no interference issues were reported from the U.S Coast Guard and that KWO-35, the NYC transmitter, has finally returned to Normal Operation and that NWS in Upton NY is conducting further tests to evaluate the coverage and quality of the broadcast. However, the NWS in Upton did not change their Public Information Statement yet at that time.[7]

Several other NWR stations broadcast within the Tri-state area and may provide partial coverage in some areas served by KWO35 - these include: WXM80 (Riverhead, Suffolk County, Long Island, NY) at 162.475 MHz; WXJ42 (Meriden, Fairfield County, southwestern CT) at 162.400 MHz; KZZ31 (Hardystown, Sussex County, extreme northern NJ) at 162.500 MHz; WXM60 (Southhard, Howell Township, Jersey Shore/central NJ) at 162.450 MHz. It should be noted that the New Jersey NWR stations receive most of their programming from the Mount Holly WFO, which covers much of New Jersey but primarily serves the greater Philadelphia metropolitan area and its adjacent regions.

County Coverage for KWO35[edit]

Counties Covered(SAME/FIPS Codes)[edit]

  • Fairfield, CT - 009001
  • Bergen, NJ - 034003
  • Essex, NJ - 034013
  • Hudson, NJ - 034017
  • Hunterdon, NJ - 034019
  • Middlesex, NJ - 034023
  • Monmouth, NJ - 034025
  • Morris, NJ - 034027
  • Ocean, NJ - 034029
  • Passaic, NJ - 034031
  • Somerset, NJ - 034035
  • Sussex, NJ - 034037
  • Union, NJ - 034039
  • Warren, NJ - 034041
  • Bronx, NY - 036005
  • Kings, NY - 036047
  • Nassau, NY - 036059
  • New York, NY - 036061
  • Queens, NY - 036081
  • Richmond, NY - 036085
  • Rockland, NY - 036087
  • Suffolk, NY - 036103
  • Westchester, NY - 036119

Marine Locations Covered (Marine Zone #)[edit]

  • Sandy Hook NJ to Fire Island NY out to 20 NM - ANZ355
  • New York Harbor - ANZ338
  • Western Long Island Sound - ANZ335
  • Long Island South Shore Base - ANZ345
  • Sandy Hook NJ to Montauk Point NY out from 20 to 40 NM - ANZ370
  • Sandy Hook NJ to Manasquan Inlet NJ out to 20 NM - ANZ450
  • Manasquan Inlet NJ to Little Egg Inlet NJ out to 20 NM - ANZ451
  • Sandy Hook NJ to Fenwick Island DE out from 20 to 40 NM - ANZ470

Offshore Waters (Marine Zone #)[edit]

Current These are the new smaller zones implented by the Ocean Prediction Center on April 1, 2014.[8]

  • South of Long Island between Montauk Point and Sandy Hook out to 1000 Fathoms - ANZ815
  • South of New England between the Great South Channel and Montauk Point out to 1000 Fathoms - ANZ810
  • Hudson Canyon to Baltimore Canyon out to 1000 Fathoms - ANZ820

Former These were the Offshore waters before the Ocean Prediction Center implented new smaller zones on April 1, 2014.

  • South of New England - ANZ083
  • Hudson Canyon to Baltimore Canyon - ANZ084

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://massis.lcs.mit.edu/archives/back.issues/2002.volume.20/vol20.iss301-350
  2. ^ http://catless.ncl.ac.uk/Risks/24.07.html#subj4
  3. ^ http://mesonet.agron.iastate.edu/wx/afos/p.php?pil=PNSOKX&e=201402212204
  4. ^ http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304026804579411362657098646
  5. ^ http://mesonet.agron.iastate.edu/wx/afos/p.php?pil=PNSOKX&e=201403261630
  6. ^ http://www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr/Maps/PHP/site.php?State=NJ&Site=KWO35
  7. ^ http://www.nws.noaa.gov/nwr/outages.php
  8. ^ http://www.opc.ncep.noaa.gov/new_zones.php

External links[edit]