NWS email seeks to counter weather hype

I just got an excellent email message from Michael Lewis, warning coordination meteorologist, National Weather Service northern Indiana office. I’m excerpting it below, with his permission. Good words. Heed them!

NWS logo

As an NWS employee, I cannot police what people decide to ‘use’ for there forecast services; however, I would hope that our trained spotters would not fall victim to the hype and hysteria that is surrounding the model forecasts for next week.

The ‘hype-casting’ for an event next week is causing concern, when any well trained meteorologist will tell you that computer model skill beyond day 5 needs to be scrutinized carefully. Model solutions have been and continue to be “all over the place” and a simple change of 50 miles or change in speed of a few hours, changes to temperature and moisture and a host of other ‘artifacts’ can result in significant differences in the computer model generated output.  Here is a well written blog – http://www.gensiniwx.com/2013/12/the-truth-is-you-gave-lousy-forecast.html.  My sharing this link does not constitute the NWS opinion or support. This is shared because as a meteorologist, I agree with nearly EVERY point made.

The NWS in Northern Indiana is aware of the forecasts that are circulating, and we are providing forecasts based on our confidence in the solution.  It is still TOO early to say with any level of certainty or confidence what the system next week will produce, let alone whether it will be all rain, all snow, or for that matter WHEN it will begin and end. 

Please continue to monitor our websites and use our services to stay informed.

Quick Briefing Pages

I have been busy putting finishing touches on the Core Partner Briefing Pages.

  • Enhanced Data Display Page
    This continues to be expanded and new data and resources are being added on a weekly basis.  This is an invaluable tool for Situational awareness.
    EDD Page Centered on the NWS IWX Area: http://tinyurl.com/q49o8bq
    Default Page: http://preview.weather.gov/edd/  (there is a mobile version of this page)

We are here to save lives and minimize loss.  We take our mission seriously and want to provide you the BEST service, the BEST forecasts and the BEST watch/warning/advisories to help you make the BEST decisions to serve your community.  No hype, no hysteria, no fear-casting.

Michael S. Lewis
Warning Coordination Meteorologist