Hurricanes

bologna

New member
A funny thing has happened to me from looking at this site: my fear of turbulence has turned into somewhat of an interest in it (obviously not an interest as in wanting to fly through turbulence, but interest as in wanting to know more about it). So here's somthing that I've been wondering about turbulence:

Do hurricanes produce turbulence? The little I know about turbulence would lead me to believe that it does, what with low pressure and high winds. But it doesn't have any thunderheads, so that makes me think that the clouds/winds would be below a typical flying altitude. Any insights would be greatly appreciated!
 

bologna

New member
And also, when I've looked at a view of all the aircraft in the sky (from AirNav) during a hurricane, there were less aircraft in that general vicinity, but there were still several in the area of the hurricane. This further confuses me.
 

kingpenguin78

New member
I have flown over/through a low level tropical storm once (over Florida), and other than some interesting looking cloud patterns, it was fairly turbulence free. There wasn't a whole lot of wind attributed with the storm, but some of the most intense rain I have seen in years.

This article describes flying through a hurricane fairly well:

http://liftoff.msfc.nasa.gov/news/2002/news-camex.asp

I am not an expert on this stuff, but pretty much it seems that it is fine as long as you stay above the weather (as with most heat based storms). However, sometimes the weather can be higher then your service altitude, so at that point you either have to fly around the cloud formation, or sit through some possibly rough turbulence.

I would guess that most air craft stay away from hurricanes because they MIGHT encounter high winds and rain at altitude and if they had to land for operating or emergency reasons you wouldn't want to have to try it during 75mph+ wind shear conditions.
 

tb_neg

Administrator
Staff member
I would think airlines avoid hurricanes. They typically fly out all of their planes when it's time. So it's possible to fly through some of the oncoming as they get out of 'Dodge', but they wouldn't fly though one.

I did track a hurricane one time, and some planes were hitting moderate, but that's it.
 
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