This came in overnight from a reader and (apparently) an avid TV viewer.
“I am getting sick and tired of a couple of the local weathermen trying to prove which is the smarter and better one at forecasting bad weather. Because of their competition we get inundated with way too much detail about the weather possibilities. For the past year I have observed a disturbing trend in weather forecast interruptions.
“Because of new technology we get inundated with interruptions about potential weather related disasters that don’t happen. Last year it even caused an unneccessary tornado siren warning. The new technology allows weather television personnel to go ON AND ON ad infinitum about details of potential weather and just missed bad things and those to come MAYBE. What we really need to know is simply where is it headed, what might it do, what we should do, and then shut up and let us go hide. Quit going on and on making us think we can wait until the last minute and know seconds before disaster strikes how to protect ourselves. Most people don’t care about the new technology’s every detail.
“What happened when the little boy cried wolf too often?”
My first reaction was, “Yes!”
The storms Tuesday evening that swept through the Amarillo area — and produced tornadoes near Bushland and Umbarger — could have been far worse than they turned out to be, so I suppose the writer/viewer’s gripes are based on what didn’t happen on his or her particular street or neighborhood. But what if an F-5 twister blew down the writer’s street, tore all the houses off their slabs, killed dozens of people — and no one knew about it in advance? I’m guessing our correspondent would have something quite different to complain about.
But I have to admit to some frustration, too, with the TV weather folks, especially when they break into TV programming to tell us that the storms are winding down, or that the “threat” is diminishing, or that there’s really nothing to worry about. Yes, I’ve actually heard words to that effect coming from the forecasters when they interrupt my favorite TV shows.
But let’s cut them just a bit of slack here. The unpredictable storms that march across the Panhandle require intense vigilance. I just wish the commentary that comes with the “Severe Weather Bulletin” wasn’t so repetitive.
I also might add that at times the Amarillo TV weather forecasters get a bit too technical in their detailed explanation of what’s happening out there. Hook echo? Who cares what it’s called? And spare me all the meteorological jargon.
All that concerns me is if the weather outside is going to kill my loved ones or me.