Web Highlight

Web Highlight

NOS post-storm operations are now underway in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Among the many activities now in progress, NOAA vessels are conducting surveys to speed the re-opening of waterways and aircraft are flying missions to capture detailed imagery of coastal storm damage. We've posted a round-up of NOS activities on that we'll be updating daily.

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NOS Communications & Education Division

NOS Assistant Administrator Weekly Newsletter

November 1, 2012



Hi everyone,

image of Holly Bamford, Ph.D.

David Kennedy is on leave this week, so I've taken up the pen.

First, I'd like to express my deep appreciation to the people of NOS who helped make preparations for Hurricane Sandy, and to all of those now participating in the response effort. Men and women from almost every part of our organization are involved in some way. I've had the privilege of participating in regular updates with NOAA's Incident Command Center and am continually impressed with the level of dedication, responsiveness and effectiveness of our staff members.

Learn more about our important work on the NOS Web site.

Thanks,

Holly Bamford, Ph.D.
Deputy Assistant Administrator
National Ocean Science

Web Highlight

NOS post-storm operations are now underway in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Among the many activities now in progress, NOAA vessels are conducting surveys to speed the re-opening of waterways and aircraft are flying missions to capture detailed imagery of coastal storm damage. We've posted a round-up of NOS activities on that we'll be updating daily.

Web Highlight

Around NOS

Coast Survey Provides Navigation Response to Ports After Sandy (OCS)

The Office of Coast Survey's Navigation Services Division started preparing for a rapid maritime response to Hurricane Sandy on Oct. 25. On Oct. 26, Coast Survey navigation response personnel and assets began moving to their initial positions. Over the weekend, navigation managers made contact with U.S. Coast Guard districts along the East Coast and, by Sunday, were participating with Coast Guard Maritime Transportation System Recovery Units in New England, New York, New Jersey, Delaware (covering Philadelphia and Delaware Bay), Baltimore, and Norfolk. On Oct. 30, NOAA Ship Ferdinand R. Hassler and NOAA R/V Bay Hydro II—both located in Norfolk, Va., for the storm— began survey missions at the request of the Hampton Roads Captain of the Port. Early on Oct. 31, a navigation team was surveying anchorage sites in New York/New Jersey, and will soon be joined by another Navigation Response Team that is coming from Florida. NOAA Ship Thomas Jefferson is currently steaming toward New York Harbor to search for dangerous debris in shipping lanes. Help is also headed to Cape May to ensure safe transit of essential ferry service. For more information, contact CAPT Jon Swallow.

Response to Hurricane Sandy (NGS)

NGS is coordinating with federal, state, and local officials to conduct remote sensing efforts in response to Sandy. Requests have come in from the U.S. Coast Guard District in New York for imagery collection of waterways supporting the ports of New York and New Jersey to verify the location of navigational aids and storm debris. Mission flights began on Wednesday, October 31. For more information, contact Mike Aslaksen.

Cause of Massive North Carolina Fish Kill Identified (NCCOS)

To find the cause of a massive fish kill in the Neuse River near New Bern, North Carolina, state officials and a river advocacy foundation sent samples to the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science laboratory in nearby Beaufort for analysis. Most of the dead fish exhibited large, open skin ulcers. Using molecular assays, the Beaufort scientists determined that the fish perished from ulcerative mycosis caused by the water mold Aphanomyces invadans, a fungus-like pathogen of wild and cultured fish around the world. Although Aphanomyces causes skin ulcers in fish, it is rarely causes large fish kills. The afflicted fish, menhaden, are commonly used for bait, fish oil supplements, as feed for fish farms, and are an important part of the food chain. While this event will not have a major effect on their population, a fish kill of this magnitude is a nuisance and expensive to clean up.  For more information, contact Wayne Litaker.

Historic Shipwreck Identified at Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary (ONMS)

NOAA maritime archaeologists announced last week that the wrecked remains of the George E. Billings, a rare Pacific Coast schooner that was employed in the lumber trade during the early 1900s, have been found off the coast of Los Angeles, Calif. At the California Islands Symposium in Ventura, Calif., on Oct. 23, maritime heritage staff with NOAA's Office of National Marine Sanctuaries confirmed the ship's identity and presented a scientific paper on its history and discovery. The Billings, a five-masted schooner built in 1903, was scuttled by the owner in 1941 off the coast of Santa Barbara Island, in waters now part of NOAA's Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary (CINMS). Archaeologists and historians with CINMS and Channel Islands National Park searched for the Billings for nearly 20 years before locating it last year. For more information, contact Robert Schwemmer.

Hawaii Governor Signs Proclamation to Celebrate CZMA 40th (OCRM)

Last week, Hawaii Governor Neal Abercrombie signed a proclamation  designating  October 27th Coastal Zone Management Day in recognition of the 40th anniversary of the Coastal Zone Management Act and Hawaii's long participation in the federal-state partnership.  The Marine and Coastal Zone Advocacy Council, a citizen advocacy group that partners with the state coastal management program to help guide coastal management activities in the state, was on hand to receive the proclamation along with the program manager of the Hawaii Coastal Zone Management Program and representatives from NOAA's Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management and Coastal Services Center.  For more information, contact Steve Frano.

OR&R's Emergency Response Division Takes Delivery of New Aviation Survival System (OR&R)

On October 19, Office of Response & Restoration Emergency Response Division staff got hands-on training on the assembly and use of new modular vests and the Survival Egress Air (SEA) system from Aerial Machine & Tool – a manufacturer of safety and survival equipment. This critical survival equipment is also used by the Department of Defense, U.S. Coast Guard, and Customs and Border Patrol for safety and survival of air crews that fly over water. The SEA system consists of a mouthpiece near the collar of a flotation vest that is connected by a hose to a compressed air bottle stowed in a special vest pocket.  After the impact of an aircraft ditching, the SEA system saves precious time and eliminates the possibility of entanglement from swimming with a metal bottle near the head, a major improvement over the prior system. The new modular vest, which can be modified to accommodate various missions and needs, contains the equipment necessary to facilitate survival after emergency ditching, a very rare, but possible event. For more information, contact Nir Barnea.

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