Was a warning totally necessary?

Courtesy of UKMO

I am not sure that the yellow warning for strong winds for the southwest overnight was totally necessary. Winds this strength affecting north of the border would attract little attention from Exeter. With regard to this case I fully realise that there are few anemograph sites downwind of Dartmoor, and yes there was a fresh and locally strong easterly wind in places at times overnight – gusts to 50 mph whatever next? There’s no doubt that the Great Oz down in Exeter will see this as just another triumph of NWP precision forecasting, because there was indeed a gust of 56 mph at Culdrose and on the Isles of Scilly to justify the inclusion of gusts of 55-60 mph but from nowhere else, even Mumbles could only come up with a gust of 47 mph. It might be that they have to dig out observations from the Needles or Berry Head to fully justify this one.

There is the remote possibility that this warning was issued yesterday by a fully automated warning system, that since the lockdown has been switched on and is now fully operational. I can see the scene now down in Exeter as the system (similar to the most appropriately named M5 multitronic computer in the Star Trek episode “The Ultimate Computer“) was switched on.

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