Voluntary Observing Ship Program
Welcome to the U.S. Voluntary Observing Ship (VOS) Program web site. Here, you will
find general information about the worldwide VOS Programme,
contact information for U.S. VOS Program Mangers and Port Meteorological Officers,
instructions for making and sending weather observations, web version of the
Mariners Weather Log, and links to other projects
and efforts related to VOS.
On any given day, volunteer crew members on nearly 1,000 ships around the world observe
the weather at their location, encode each observation in a standard format, and send the
data over satellite or radio to the many national meteorological services that have
responsibility for marine weather forecasts. This data is archived for future use by
climatologists and other scientists.
The United States VOS Program services about one quarter of the world's VOS fleet,
providing ships' crews with weather observer training, handbooks and forms, observation
encoding software, barometer calibration, the Mariners Weather Log, and weather
observing tools. Located in the major ports around the country,
Port Meteorological Officers are the VOS Program's field representatives and primary points
of contact for ships.
Only YOU know the weather at your position.
Report it at 0000, 0600, 1200, 1800 UTC to NOAA's National Weather Service.
"Sunrise in Duluth"
Photo courtesy of Barb Fuller