Warning From New National Hurricane Center Director

The nation's new top hurricane forecaster is
warning that forecasting hurricanes could become less reliable.
National Hurricane Center Director Bill Proenza is concerned
about a key weather satellite that's already beyond its expected
life span.
The so-called QuikScat weather satellite lets forecasters
measure such basics as wind speed. It's in its seventh year of
operation, even though it was designed to last five years. Proenza
says replacing it would take at least four years even with
immediate funding approval. The project would have a price tag of
about 400 million dollars.
Proenza says if QuikScat fails, the resulting loss of data could
mean placing longer stretches of coastline under warnings and
asking more people to evacuate.
In an interview with The Associated Press, Proenza also calls
for hundreds of millions of dollars in new funding for expanded
research and predictions.