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Metar “UP”

Posted by on February 2, 2009 9 Comments Category : Flight Instructor Blog Tags :

Take a look at this METAR:

KSGH 021156Z AUTO 28006KT 7SM UP CLR M03/M06 A3004 RMK AO2 FZRANO 50006 60000 T10271061 10000 21027 UPB26 P0000 SLP181

Any idea what the contraction “UP” stands for?  That is “unknown precipitation”.  You’ll see another mention of unknown precipitation near the end of the report, “UPB26”  That means that the unkown precipitation began at 26 past the hour and in the case of the METAR quoted above, that would be 1126Z.

Something else about this METAR report which is unique: FZRANO.  This stands for Freezing Rain (FZRA) information is not available.  Most likely this is due to an issue with the observation station (although I’m surprised there isn’t a “$” at the end of the report. That symbol <$> would indicate maintenance is needed on the observation station).

Ok, just a couple of quick things I wanted to show you from my weather report this morning…back to my preflight!

Fly Safe!


  1. Sarah on Feb 02, 2009

    Thanks for the decode. I’m recalling that “A02” AWOS is not as capable as “A03”, so given the temperature perhaps it can’t tell if it’s rain, snow or other precipitating water.

    It is sort of a puzzling abbreviation though – sounds like “NO”, not “Not available”. Given the respect due Freezing Rain it’s good to know! Reminds me of last thunderstorm season, when I was puzzling over similarly scary “TSNO”, meaning “dunno if there’s thunderstorms here”.

  2. Paul on Feb 02, 2009

    I’m based at that airport and I don’t recall seeing the FZRANO before and I don’t think they’ve made a change to the actual station so I’m not sure exactly why that particular remark has been added. Maybe I need to find a ASOS expert…

    Yeah, but I agree, that freezing rain is something you would like to know about if it was occurring.

  3. Sarah on Feb 02, 2009

    By the way, apropos of absolutely nothing, are you familiar with the Red Green TV show? Graham Greene had cameos as an advice giver…. the segments were “Ask an Explosives Expert”. Weekly letters were answered, usually about relationship advice where the response was always completely about the fine points of TNT and blasting cap usage. I assume you are expecting aviation questions…


  4. Paul on Feb 02, 2009

    You could ask me an explosive question, but I can’t promise anything. Well, actually I can…. I could promise that if my explosive advice is followed it will most likely will result in injury or death. I fear my explosive chemical experience is limited mostly to bottle rockets and sparklers. I would definitely have to add some disclaimers and waivers before agreeing to answer anything. Is the domain “ask-an-explosives-expert.com” taken?

    Now if you put diesel fuel in a combustion chamber, add igniters, compressors and some turbines and I might be of more assistance!

  5. Eric on Feb 02, 2009

    “NO” usually refers to ‘not observed’, although it can also mean ‘not operational’… whenever the visibility at my home base, KPAE, drops to around 1/2 SM the METAR reads “RVRNO” at the end. Either there is no equipment installed, or it’s been broken for a few years!

  6. Paul on Feb 02, 2009

    Ok, a little research has determined that…officially, NO stands for Not Available now why it is “not available” is still up for determination but here is my source:


  7. Arthur Hill on Feb 15, 2009

    Like how O.K stands for ‘oll korrect’ (Basically it’s someone’s typo); i’m sure NO means here ‘Not O’vailable’ – Aviation humour guys..

  8. Katie Smith on Jan 05, 2015

    Is it possible for a METAR to report 15sm visibility?

  9. Steven Michael on Dec 26, 2017

    FZRANO indicates an automated station equipped with a freezing rain sensor and the sensor is not operating. This is one of the maintenance data groups reported with “NO”. Source: Aviation Weather Services, AC 00-45G, Change 1 (July 2010),, Sensor Status Indicatorrs.

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