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Forecasters Apologize, But Why?

New Jersey-based National Weather Service meteorologist Gary Szatkowski apologized for not getting the forecast right for the snow storm this week. (Twitter)
New Jersey-based National Weather Service meteorologist Gary Szatkowski apologized for not getting the forecast right for the snow storm this week. (Twitter)

Meteorologists have apologized for getting yesterday’s snow totals so wrong in New Jersey, where only about 3 inches fell instead of the 24 that was predicted.

But other weather experts say the forecasts were not all that wrong because due to last-minute changes in the air, the storm simply tracked about 75 miles farther east than expected, and dropped 30 inches of snow on Long Island.

Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson speaks with Bob Rauber, head of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at University of Illinois, about the forecasting for this storm and the science versus the art of weather prediction.

Tweets from National Weather Service meteorologist Gary Szatkowski:

You made a lot of tough decisions expecting us to get it right, and we didn’t. Once again, I’m sorry.

— Gary Szatkowski (@GarySzatkowski) January 27, 2015

My deepest apologies to many key decision makers and so many members of the general public.

— Gary Szatkowski (@GarySzatkowski) January 27, 2015

Guest

  • Bob Rauber, head of the Department of Atmospheric Sciences at University of Illinois.

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