BLOOMINGTON -- False reports of bad weather aren’t just a problem for meteorologists, but are felony crimes similar to a fake bomb threat or emergency 911 call.My question would be, why is the NWS taking weather reports from just anybody? I guess any information to assist in warning of a potential threat is useful -as long as its real. But I know they train their own spotters. Maybe they might want to just stick with them and local law enforcement. It's like when radio stations like WMAY open up their phone lines for eye-witness reports during bad weather, there's always at least one asshole calling in bogus information.
So says the National Weather Service office in Lincoln, which has received about a dozen fictional reports of severe weather since mid-April through an online form on the service’s Web site. False weather reports also have been made in other parts of Illinois and in Wisconsin.
Chris Miller, warning coordination meteorologist at the Lincoln office, said most of reports were made during severe weather. The Web poster made false claims about fallen tree limbs, hail or a tornado in a scattered area, including Taylorville, Charleston, Blue Mound and Mattoon.
“There doesn’t seem to be a pattern,” said Miller. The weather service doesn’t know who is submitting the false reports or why, but the FBI is investigating.
“This is a very serious offense,” he said. “It is very similar to falsely calling in a bomb threat or 911, because reports that come in have to be followed up on.”
Monday, June 11, 2007
It's Not Nice To Fool Mother Nature
What kind of loser would prank the National Weather Service.