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Air Force Pilot Flies Through Hurricane Dorian Five Times, Captures Images: ‘It Was Just Heartbreaking’

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Craig Bannister
By Craig Bannister | September 4, 2019 | 3:24 PM EDT

(Photo: U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security)

A pilot who has already flown through Hurricane Dorian five times collecting data shared images and stories from his flights in an interview with “Fox & Friends First” on Tuesday.

Lt. Col. Jeff Ragusa, a pilot from the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron, says that the devastation he saw during his latest mission over the Bahamas during the storm was “heartbreaking” – especially, since Dorian was moving so slowly:

“We were out in the storm about five and a half hours, and the whole time we were out there saw less than four miles of movement from that storm. Of course, it was just heartbreaking for us to sit in and around Bahama Islands during that time, and we just hated to see it sit there so long.”

“We’re glad to do it,” Ragusa said, explaining that Air Force flights into hurricanes collect critical data that greatly improve the National Hurricane Center’s ability to create accurate forecasts:

“The National Hurricane Center tells us that their predictions increase in accuracy about 25 to 30 percent when they have us flying, compared to when they aren’t able to get us into a storm. So, we’re giving them wind direction, wind speed, pressure, humidity, those types of things.”

 

 

 

 

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