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Old 08-02-2010, 06:55 PM
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Default Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

I have just been informed this is an editorial.

Weather alerts just not working
By Ken Zulian, Windsor Star July 29, 2010

I'm thinking that Environment Canada really needs to upgrade its system or something, or pay attention to what is happening around them.

I'm at work and I notice that I have an email from the Weather Network with a severe thunderstorm watch issued by Environment Canada.

So I go online and check the radar from Wunderground's website and to my disgust again with our weather tracking service here -- seeing that most of southwest Michigan and parts of Ohio just south of us has tornado watches and just close to Toledo has a tornado warning.

I do believe that our local stations should rely on Detroit's weather warnings and we'll be better informed than waiting for Environment Canada to inform us.

It's like the line in a movie, "They don't issue a tornado warning until your house is 100 yards from where it was built."

What I say to Environment Canada is get with the program.

Ken Zulian,

Windsor
Copyright (c) The Windsor Star

Read more: http://www.windsorstar.com/news/Weat...#ixzz0vUN1L33X
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Last edited by Derecho; 08-02-2010 at 09:59 PM.
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Old 08-04-2010, 04:10 PM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

Well, Mr. Zulian, as a "reporter", this editorial has no depth or interesting points; you are feeling the frustration that all of us Canadians feel. Environment Canada is extremely under-funded, under-staffed and over-worked. One can thank the Conservative Government of Brian Mulroney back in the early 1990's (and the cutbacks currently with the present Conservative government, but that's another topic). Not that any other political party has supported them either. It's not the people who work at EC that are the problem...it's the politics, period. We need to send a message to our federal M.P.'s that we need more emphasis (and funding) to allow Environment Canada to do it's job and deliver proper real-time forecasting. It's pathetic that one has to look south of the border to keep informed of threatening weather in our own country. Perhaps this would be a good story to expose to the public, as a reporter, no?
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Old 08-05-2010, 01:02 AM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

re:
It's like the line in a movie, "They don't issue a tornado warning until your house is 100 yards from where it was built."

Actually for Niagara at least - it's the exact opposite. We get warnings all the time, and it results in nothing. If there's a thunderstorm 50 miles away that MIGHT head this direction, they'll issue a warning. The -possibility- of severe weather is supposed to be what a watch is for, not a warning.

Myself, I'd much rather have a few missed warnings, if it meant every warning that *IS* issued results in a tornado or severe thunderstorm. THEN I would actually heed them. Warnings are issued left, right, and center for my area, and they rarely come to be anything. So it's just a natural response that people ignore them.

THE ENTIRE *REASON* E.C. over-issues warnings (imo) is EXACT BECAUSE of articles like this. You get one guy whining about "why wasn't a warning issued!?" and this makes E.C. issue warnings for almost everything. I can see in the future they'll just issue a severe thunderstorm warning at 12:00am that goes until 11:59pm that night, EVERY day. That way nobody can say they weren't warned if something happens.

[rant off]

People also have to remember, that we have a larger land mass than the U.S. and only 1/10th the population. There's just not enough manpower or ways to pay to get comparable coverage to the US, on every parcel of land in Canada. We're just simply too big and sparsely populated to be able to provide the same kind of meteorological service.
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Last edited by DarkSky; 08-05-2010 at 01:12 AM.
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Old 08-05-2010, 01:29 AM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkSky View Post
re:
It's like the line in a movie, "They don't issue a tornado warning until your house is 100 yards from where it was built."

Actually for Niagara at least - it's the exact opposite. We get warnings all the time, and it results in nothing. If there's a thunderstorm 50 miles away that MIGHT head this direction, they'll issue a warning. The -possibility- of severe weather is supposed to be what a watch is for, not a warning.

Myself, I'd much rather have a few missed warnings, if it meant every warning that *IS* issued results in a tornado or severe thunderstorm. THEN I would actually heed them. Warnings are issued left, right, and center for my area, and they rarely come to be anything. So it's just a natural response that people ignore them.

THE ENTIRE *REASON* E.C. over-issues warnings (imo) is EXACT BECAUSE of articles like this. You get one guy whining about "why wasn't a warning issued!?" and this makes E.C. issue warnings for almost everything. I can see in the future they'll just issue a severe thunderstorm warning at 12:00am that goes until 11:59pm that night, EVERY day. That way nobody can say they weren't warned if something happens.

[rant off]

People also have to remember, that we have a larger land mass than the U.S. and only 1/10th the population. There's just not enough manpower or ways to pay to get comparable coverage to the US, on every parcel of land in Canada. We're just simply too big and sparsely populated to be able to provide the same kind of meteorological service.
They over issue tstorm warnings, but under issue tornado warnings.
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Old 08-05-2010, 08:57 AM
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Default Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

I would settle for level 3 radar being available free to the public here so those who choose to care have better information. There's no way why we in Canada shouldn't have equal radar to the states available to the public
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Old 08-05-2010, 04:22 PM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smokin Joe View Post
I would settle for level 3 radar being available free to the public here so those who choose to care have better information. There's no way why we in Canada shouldn't have equal radar to the states available to the public
Good point. Even though E.C. is underfunded for what their jobs encompass, it's still a LOT of money they get.

Making free live hi-resolution radar available to the public would be a small fraction of EC's budget I'm sure. Heck you can get an unmetered 100mbit server for $1500/month. That's only 18 grand a year. A small price to pay to have a dedicated server giving free live radar to the public.

BUT.... it wouldn't do much good as 99.9% of the public aren't going to be watching live radar on their computers whenever storms are approaching. And even if some did, the majority don't know how to predict radar images. So I have to admit, it would be a GREAT idea for US, but wouldn't be cost-effective for what it does.

I've said this before many times - what we need is private radio/tv stations taking more calls in from storm spotters and broadcasting their own warnings. There's a thread here: http://www.ontariostorms.com/showthread.php?t=1 with a list of contacts to the media.
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Old 08-05-2010, 06:26 PM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkSky View Post
Good point. Even though E.C. is underfunded for what their jobs encompass, it's still a LOT of money they get.

Making free live hi-resolution radar available to the public would be a small fraction of EC's budget I'm sure. Heck you can get an unmetered 100mbit server for $1500/month. That's only 18 grand a year. A small price to pay to have a dedicated server giving free live radar to the public.

BUT.... it wouldn't do much good as 99.9% of the public aren't going to be watching live radar on their computers whenever storms are approaching. And even if some did, the majority don't know how to predict radar images. So I have to admit, it would be a GREAT idea for US, but wouldn't be cost-effective for what it does.

I've said this before many times - what we need is private radio/tv stations taking more calls in from storm spotters and broadcasting their own warnings. There's a thread here: http://www.ontariostorms.com/showthread.php?t=1 with a list of contacts to the media.
EC's budget was slashed numerous times in the 90s, then the Liberal government closed ten or so weather offices, thus combing it all into seven offices, now eight I believe. There are thousands of employees working for Environment Canada, but there are only a couple dozen actual meteorologists, about 5-20 per office. The 2008 federal audit of EC revealed budget issues, useless spending, etc. The report is public on the government of Canada website.

I'm in such a rush right now, about to leave for the cottage trip, so here are some key points things:

-The weather offices are building work stations similar to the NWS.
- Serious under-staffing issues at each office for trained employees or employees to train new people.
- Intense work loads on actual meteorologists due to under-staffing
- More funding being instated to bring in up to date modern tracking tools and computers + to hire new meteorologists
- EC uses outdated technology

Stuff like that
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Old 08-17-2010, 08:31 PM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

I agree with this reporter. You can't rely on EC or TWS for anything. I wouldn't trust them with my safety or life. They issues watches to save their arses, never upgrade them promptly. That storm on Sunday remained a watch until 20mins after I suffered wind damage, then it was Severe Thunderstorm Warning, the cell had already passed. I'm starting to wonder if anyone is actually working there or if it takes any sort of certification to work there.
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Old 03-26-2011, 12:55 PM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

well to be honest its not like Environment Canada is doing the best to get the watches and warnings out its like a game of guess where the storms are gonna pop up and lets just put a watch out and see what happens most of the time its nothing but a few clouds over head. We should (like the US) have t.v. sponsored and trained chasers and spotters as well as trained recreational chasers that can call in and report with out getting hassled i have my level one certification for the states spotter network with ID that allows me to call in and report weather and i give my ID and any false claims i get my ID number revoked and i can't report.
Cause lets face it, people who enjoy chasing pay more close attention to the radar and weather outside then those getting paid to do so cause well all in all it becomes a job and there for you get sick of said job. but i could be wrong with that last statement because i do not know the inner workings of EC and how often they have someone sitting at the computer watching the 10min loop radar.
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Old 03-26-2011, 05:07 PM
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Default Re: Windsor Star Reporter Disgusted With Environment Canada

We DO have CANWARN (which i'm a volunteer of) so it's not like we have nothing....
However improvements can always be made....
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