UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — The team at Penn State’s television show “Weather World” had a rare chance to visit some of the world’s leading experts on hurricanes when the gears started turning: Could the team turn these encounters into an educational series on improving hurricane preparedness in Pennsylvania?
“This is a great honor for us because this category isn't just limited to weather related television and it includes a number of qualified participants across the state,” said meteorology lecturer Marisa Ferger. “That’s what was exciting. It was our first year entering so we were thrilled to win.”
The series features experts from the National Hurricane Center (NHC) during their Hurricane Awareness Tour, which included a stop in Harrisburg. The series features the role of the NHC, the National Weather Service, the effects of storm surge, the pilots who brave the skies to study hurricanes and historical hurricane data across Pennsylvania.
Although strong winds from hurricanes typically don’t pose a threat to Pennsylvania, flooding from heavy tropical rains does. About 83% of tropical storm-related deaths between 2016 and 2018 were caused by flooding, and half of those were in vehicles, according to the NHC.
Penn State teaching professor Jon Nese, Ferger and on-air meteorologist and researcher Rob Lydick created, wrote and hosted the series. It was filmed by Weather World media partners PCN. The series aired beginning June 1, 2019, the first official day of hurricane season.