Working through the wild wind: 100th OSW supports base amid storms Eunice and Franklin

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Viviam Chiu
  • 100 ARW

Airmen with the 100th Operations Support Squadron weather flight worked throughout the weekend to keep the base secure through two consecutive wind storms. 

Two heavy wind, rain and hail spells affected Mildenhall from Feb. 18th to Feb. 20th. 

“We started identifying storms to wing leadership on Feb. 13th, and briefed leadership toward Feb. 14th,” said MSgt Franklynn Kapchuck, 100 OSS weather master. 

Storm Eunice, the first storm, affected Mildenhall on Feb. 18th. 

Following that was Storm Franklin, a less intense- yet heavy wind and rain spell that mostly affected Scotland, Northern Ireland and northern England. 

“Our airfield sensors gather data from a meteorological weather station that provides real-time weather data from the airfield over to the technicians in the weather shop,” said Kapchuck. 

The AN/FMQ-19 employs 10 sensors that measure wind speed, rain accumulation, lightning occurrence and other factors. 

It sits on the airfield and collects data over a 5-mile radius.

The 100th OSS/OSW Weather team uses it to keep a constant watch over forecasts and weather conditions that can affect the safety of pilots and aircrew. 

Weather flight performs a 24-hour operation, switching between 8- and 12-hour shifts. 

“We work towards the preservation of the base’s assets, push out forecasts for the base, and weather briefs for aircraft,” said Staff Sgt. Benjamin Crayne, 100 OSS weather technician. 

Weather flight’s goal is to keep the installation safe and secure.