The Hydrometeorological Prediction Center (HPC) has decided to change its name to the Weather Prediction Center starting March 5, 2013. The HPC is a great weather resource that provides accurate updates on precipitation totals all across the United States. They release rainfall totals for up to seven days across the U.S. and also issue snow, sleet, and freezing rain totals when larger storms develop across the country. HPC decided to change their name to provide a clearer and easier-to-understand name for the center.
Personally, I will likely continue calling it “HPC”, but I will admit, it is easier to say “Weather Prediction Center” than “Hydrometeorological Prediction Center.” The name change was influenced by the strategy of being a Weather Ready Nation, which suggested the center create a new strategic plan and broader name recognition.
Jim Hoke, director of the newly named center located in College Park, Maryland, spoke about the name change:
The new name captures the great breadth of products and services delivered each and every day and night of the year as the center works alongside the rest of the National Weather Service team to build a Weather-Ready Nation. Although our mission hasn’t changed at all, it is nice now to have a name everyone can understand, pronounce and spell.
The HPC (soon-to-be Weather Prediction Center) plan for improving its services has four components, which are highly intertwined with each other and with the NWS Strategic Plan:
1) Partners & Customers– Expanding decision support services focusing on high?impact events through enhanced collaborative activities with partners, customers, and other stakeholders.
2) Products and Services– Focusing and delivering science?based, high?impact products and services responsive to changing customer requirements.
3) Science and Technology– Strengthening the Center’s foundation in science and technology infusion to improve forecast performance and customer responsiveness, especially for high impact events.
4) People and Infrastructure– Evolving the workforce, organization, and culture to respond to emerging challenges rapidly and effectively.
Bottom line: HPC will now be called the Weather Prediction Center. It is easier to say, spell, and remember. They will continue to offer beneficial precipitation forecasts for the United States. I guess now is the time to start referencing them as WPC…?
Matt Daniel is weekend Meteorologist for 13WMAZ (CBS) in Macon, Georgia, and founder of the blog Athens GA Weather. He's a self-described "big weather and music geek" and has produced weather content for CNN, MSN Weather and EarthSky. He has a passion for helping to keep people safe when severe weather strikes and says if you don't have a NOAA Weather Radio ... you should get one.