Hurricane Michael made landfall in Florida yesterday as a category 4 hurricane. Now it’s a tropical storm, and it’s moving through the south quickly – it’s already in North Carolina. Yes, the same state that was just dealing with Hurricane Florence. It’s been a rough year.
But have you ever seen the inside of a hurricane? This team from the US Air Force does that any chance they get. They’re the 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squad, better known as the “Hurricane Hunters” from the Air Force Reserves. They fly a plane straight into the hurricane. That might sound totally insane, but it’s apparently pretty safe, just a little bumpy. The closer they got to the storm, the rougher the turbulence got. But once they “punch” through the wall of the eye of the hurricane, things get really calm. And remarkably “pretty,” as there’s sunshine and blue sky. But, that doesn’t change the fact that it’s super-destructive below.
The “cloud wall” you see in the video after they get in the middle is the actual eye wall of the storm. The “wrapping” that the clouds do is called the “stadium effect,” since anywhere you turn and look, the clouds are wrapped around you. When you look down towards the ground, you could see the storm surge making landfall, flooding the towns and beaches along the coast. Check out more information on the storm and flight crew here.