Come On, Irene

Hurricane Irene is expected to hit space coast facilities at Patrick AFB and Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla., in the next few days. Both bases have been placed in hurricane condition four and officials are taking precautionary measures to secure property and launch vehicles that may be exposed to the storm. Hurricane response teams have been placed on alert and any outdoor items “that may become projectiles” are being safely stored, according to a release. Airmen and their families are being told to monitor the news and the base website in case an evacuation becomes necessary. According to the National Hurricane Center, the cateogory three hurricane, which is rolling over the Bahamas Wednesday afternoon, is likely to become a category four by Thursday. As of Tuesday, the Florida National Guard’s 125th Fighter Wing had started to evacuate aircraft, though not personnel. Four of eight aircraft evacuated from the Peurto Rico National Guard’s 156th Airlift Wing have since returned to the base. (National Guard Bureau release)