DAVE LEWKE: Take cover from TV weather hype

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Posted by So true on June 24, 2009 at 14:02:05:

I found this a funny and good read. From the Wisconsin State Journal-

It's summer in Wiscocnsin and time for the local TV stations to repeatedly announce potentially deadly thunderstorms. Perhaps its a spinoff from the politicians telling us daily of new crises from which we need protection.
Don't get me wrong. If danger is lurking, I expect these weathermen to warn me and the rest of the community.
But please use words such as, "There is a tornado on the ground, and it is heading directly towards your house on Wheeler Road." Forget the tornado "watch" and "warning" stuff. Nobody knows which is which anyhow.
And remember that these terms are brought to you by the same government who coined the "condition orange" at the airport. Would you know what to do if they announced "condition purple" or some other color of the rainbow?
During a recent rainstorm, the weatherman droned on for hours with such useful scientific information as: "The sound of thunder won't hurt you. The lightening will."
I was repeatedly warned to take cover. I was told to warn neighbors who might not be tuned in. If a neighbor of mine got me out of bed to tell me to take cover because it was raining, he would indeed experience violence, and it wouldn't be a thunderstorm.
On the positive side, it is kind of interesting as the weatherman points out on the chart that it is raining in this part of Madison but not in that part. When I looked out the window, I discovered he was right. Why didn't I think of that?
Because of the impending terror of a thunderstorm, parents were told to hustle their families to a sheltered place in the home and to put bicycle helmets on (I kid you not), and to be sure you had tennis shoes on in case there is glass on the floor after the storm. I can only imagine hundreds of terrified families huddled in their basements and thousands of crabby kids when the sun came up the next morning.
Wouldn't it be nice if news announcers didn't try to make news, and if weathermen used some common sense? We can only hope that our local TV stations realize that most people know enough to come in out of the rain without being told.
Lewke lives in Madison.

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