While passengers are relaxing and exploring the world aboard Princess Cruises’ ships, little do they know that throughout their vacation the vessels are also helping the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) track global weather patterns. In 2009, Princess ships made 20,139 weather observations – more than any other cruise line – earning the company the distinction of NOAA’s “Weather Cruise Ship Company of the Year.” Coral Princess led the fleet with 5,142 observations.
The voluntary reporting system helps NOAA track weather patterns in many areas of the world where the organization doesn’t have direct access to local information. The ships measure air temperature, humidity, wind direction and strength, sea waves and swells. Ships send information at a minimum of every six hours when at sea to a database which is forwarded to NOAA.
“As long-time participants in this important program, we’re happy that our fleet was able to provide so much data this year to help with worldwide weather forecasting,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. “With Princess ships sailing around the globe to all seven continents, we’re in the unique position to be able to take weather readings in a multitude of destinations where NOAA might not otherwise be able to get information.”
This data, which is gathered not only from cruise ships, but from all types of ships worldwide, is used to help NOAA track and forecast weather patterns around the world.