A bit bloody late now!

I posted this morning about how poor yesterday’s rather limp excuse of a yellow warning for ice was. It neglected to mention any region further north than Sterling, when it was quite obvious much of the Highlands had seen late showers and ice. In that article I also noted how the chief forecaster had chosen to ignore the risk of the showers (then across the west coast) spreading eastward during the day and and not bothering to issue a warning for snow or ice.

For his information it’s been snowing steadily in Strathpeffer since around 1 PM we have 3 or 4 cms as I write (5 PM). It was a very cold start to the day here with temperatures still -3°C at 11 AM, so when the snow started falling it started settling. So the warning for snow and ice issued at 1606 UTC was very late and is already inaccurate. Strathpeffer is at 60 M AMSL and not 200 to 300 M, and as far as I know Dingwall has snow which is on the Cromarty Firth. The main A834 to Ullapool has snow on it but is being well gritted, unlike the roads in Bradninch Devon where we lived until last year.

All I am is a retired curmudgeonly ex-metman, fascinated by the vagaries of the British weather, intently watching the hourly SYNOPs, weather radar, satellite imagery and the NWP models day by day. So how is it that I can see this coming and the Met Office with their talented array of bright forecasters and super-computers can’t? Their belated, half hearted, no doubt reluctantly issued yellow warning is at least 6 hours too late to be of any real use. It reminded me of the warnings that I issued at RAF stations as an assistant when snow first began to fall – “The snow now falling…”.

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