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Dublin: 10 °C Wednesday 22 May, 2019
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'Why did you get it so wrong?': Most complaints made to Met Éireann are about inaccurate weather forecasts

One complainant said they took two days off work based on the sunny weather forecast, only for it to be rainy and cloudy.

IT’S NOT ALWAYS easy to be a weather forecaster in Ireland. You really never know what might happen.

However, as we have seen of late, some of the veteran forecasters are well able to handle whatever comes their way.

Tweet by @Richard Conachey Source: Richard Conachey/Twitter

Unfortunately, there are a few viewers and listeners out there that have taken issue with some of the weather forecasters and reports from Met Éireann.

Documents released to TheJournal.ie under the Freedom of Information Act reveal that over a ten-month period, 112 complaints were made to the forecaster between 1 September 2015 and 1 July 2016.

While last year there were complaints about an arrow pointing out where Ireland is, as well as complaints about barbeques being ruined, this year a lot of complaints were in relation to the weather forecast being inaccurate.

31/5/2016 Good Sunny Weather Source: Leah Farrell

One viewer got in touch to say:

What a joke. From forecasting that today would be mostly sunny yesterday to now saying it will be dull and cloudy. This is not forecasting, it’s nowcasting…

While another was disappointed in May that his two days off work were ruined by the failure of the sun to appear:

Hi guys. Just want to say how disappointed I am with your forecasting… You stated Monday and Tuesday would be warm and sunny. What a joke. I took two days off work and it was cloudy and raining like November.Going back to the weekend, which was supposed to turn good, it was worse than a cold November day… you managed to ruin my weekend and days off getting my hopes up and activities planned. Think I’ll stick to the BBC in the future.

Another had banked on sunny weather.

On Radio One you forecast dry [weather] for the east of the country. On that basis I arranged to have seats treated for woodworm. The heavens opened… arrangements were washed out. Could you give me a reason why you got it so wrong?

10/06/2016. Dublin Weather Scenes. Pictured people Source: Sam Boal

One cyclist said he relies on the rainfall radar as a guide for his training in the Dublin and Wicklow mountains.

“It has been evident from checking the new scale radar and it indicating no rainfall and [then] looking out the window and seeing it raining you know there is something wrong.”

Another was wondering when Storm Abigail was going to show up.

Hi, living in Donegal. What happened? Where is Abigail? Listened to your warnings expecting severe weather, it’s now 11.40 and calm!

met

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How can Met Eireann get away with wrong forecasts so much, I am baffled? If another service provider got it wrong so much, that service provider would be long gone… Met Eireann says one thing and the sky above our heads says another.

10/06/2016. Dublin Weather Scenes. Pictured people Source: Sam Boal

This complainant went so far as giving the national forecaster some tips on how they could do the future forecasts… using a few frogs.

met 2

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Boy, did you get the weather for the weekend wrong. 19 to 21 degrees and sunny? Stick to your day job and trying to win the Lotto.

10/06/2016. Dublin Weather Scenes. Pictured people Source: Sam Boal

This viewer didn’t like how the forecast seemed to be focused on weather affecting Dublin.

met 3

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While another asked:

“Since when is Dublin a region? Are the Dubs now considered a fifth province?”

One viewer noted one omission from the European forecast.

Can you please tell me why England is not included in the European weather forecast on TV. Every other country is covered and then we just ignore our nearest neighbour. Seems petty. (Note: This was sent last November so it was way before the Brexit vote.)

A handful of complaints were in relation to the forecasters, and just like last year, there were a number who felt the need to comment on the wardrobe of the female weather forecasters.

18/7/2016 Good Sunny Weather Heatwaves Source: RollingNews.ie

One complainant said: “I find Met Eireann reports more glamour orientated than weather detail…”.

One viewer took issue with some of the clothes on air not being timely to the seasons.

“One can hardly believe that we are having the coldest weather at the moment by the way some of the female presenters are dressed.”

While another took issue with the “American-style language” which the viewer said was “unwelcome and does not belong on this side of the Atlantic Ocean”. The complainant was also critical of new words and phrases were being used to describe the weather.

“What a load of garbage. ‘Broad brush’ and ‘toppling rain’. What in God’s name is all this nonsense about?”

We all know that Ireland’s weather is unpredictable and there can often be four seasons in one day, so spare a thought for those up in Glasnevin weather station.

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