BOM changing the weather

johnboy 1 September 2010 3

The Bureau of Meteorology has announced the way they’re doing weather forecasts in NSW and here in the ACT.

Some of the improved services available from 1 September 2010 include:

— 7 day forecasts provided for nearly 70 locations across NSW and the ACT…
— 26 of these locations will receive fully worded, 7 day forecasts that include weather descriptions, wind speed and directions, temperatures, fire danger and UV.
— 68 locations will receive a 7 day, summary forecast, with the weather description and the minimum/maximum temperatures.

— Some district forecast boundaries will be changed, particularly those in southern NSW, to better match the Local Government boundaries.

— Two coastal waters zones will be split into smaller areas to make the marine forecasts more precise for those zones.

Apparently the system will provide more useful information and less donkey work for Meteorologists.

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3 Responses to BOM changing the weather
Peptis Peptis 9:44 pm 01 Sep 10

I switched over from BOM to Weatherzone ( and haven’t looked back.

I don’t know if BOM does it, but Weatherzone will give you percentage chance of rain as well as the amount expected. For example, it may say 90% chance of rain, but less than 1mm expected. So you know it’s probably going to rain, but not very much.

samson13 samson13 8:47 pm 01 Sep 10

What’s the deal with the new probabilities?

“Chance of any rainfall:30% Chance of no rainfall:70%”

Are they going to mix other probabilities in such as for example “Chance of any rainfall:30% chance of heavy rainfall:10% Chance of no rainfall:70%”?

Otherwise it seems to add clutter and make the forecast harder to read for no value. (I know they have have some dumb readership but anybody who can understand 30% chance of rain can subtract 30 from 100 surely).

That been said I’ve never really understood the definition of chance of rain and haven’t found a well worded description… Options I have

1) Probability that rain will happen over the AWS in the forecast area. Say Canberra airport.
2) Probability that rain will happen somewhere in the forecast district.
3) Average probability that it will rain at any point in the forecast area.

There are others but I don’t think they make as much sense. For rain these would be very similar but for storms and showers they can be very different.

A couple of years back there was a letter to the editor of the Canberra times bagging out the BoM for forcasting very high probability of rain for a long stretch of days and not having it rain at all. I remember having been rained on during all except one of the days. There wasn’t much rain but it did rain in isolated showers.

caf caf 4:49 pm 01 Sep 10

I’ll give you a winter prediction.

It’s going to be cold, it’s going to be dark, and it’s going to last for the rest of your life.

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