The Capital Region’s Doppler radar is down, and it will remain that way until sometime in August.
The National Weather Service reported a “major hardware failure” with the radar located in East Berne that will require large equipment and a team of workers to correct. As a result, the weather service will now need to rely on neighboring radar transmitters — the closest is roughly 140 miles away in Binghamton — for its Doppler readings.
Ian Lee, a meteorologist with the weather service, said the radar began exhibiting problems Tuesday evening and shut down altogether Wednesday afternoon. He estimated the issue will take at least a couple of weeks to fix, during which time the weather service will need to use feeds from other radars throughout the Northeast, including ones located in Burlington, Vt., Montauk on Long Island, Boston and Binghamton.
“We’re going to be able to use all those radars,” he said.
Lee said the distance shouldn’t pose any issues for the weather service, which will still provide warnings and forecasts as usual. He said the only time the local radar outage will pose any issue is when it comes to tracking the direction of major storm systems rolling through the area.
“It’s going to be a little bit harder to analyze them,” he said.