TV Meteorologist

TV Meteorologist

Kevin Selle

Wichita Falls, TX

Male, 52

I've been a broadcast meteorologist on television since the early 1990's. Happy to answer any questions about the weather or local TV news. Yes, I often wear sneakers on set just out of view of the camera.

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178 Questions


Last Answer on June 26, 2017

Best Rated

How long does it take a new weather reporter to get the hang of pointing to the weather map on screen? I've heard it's really difficult confusing b/c it's actually a blank screen behind them.

Asked by clambakejake over 4 years ago

It usually clicks in pretty quick but there is a mental hurdle to get past. You are exactly right. We stand in front of a blank wall, usually bright green, sometimes blue. The control room equipment digitally inserts the weather maps in the areas where the camera sees green (you have to be careful about the colors in your neckties) the process is called chroma key. On either side of the wall we look at a monitor that shows us the "mixed" version of the picture, and there is a teleprompter in front of the camera lens showing the same image. That is where the mental hurdle takes a little time because that image is reversed, like looking in a mirror. When giving studio tours I usually ask someone to stand in the middle of the country, looking forward, and ask them to point to Boston. They usually hesitate a moment and then the hand goes up to Seattle and we'll have a good laugh. Great question, thanks!

what's with the obsession with naming storms? any practical reason for this, or just a marketing gimmick?

Asked by streetscribe over 4 years ago

You've asked a really hot question right now. Naming tropical storms began in the early 1950's. Tracking was initially done by latitude and longitude which proved confusing especially when there were multiple storms. This winter season The Weather Channel decided to name winter storms. Their claim is that it helps raise awareness. We had a representative from The Weather Channel on a podcast I co-host, called WeatherBrains, a few months ago. There are a couple of issues. The Weather Channel did not discuss their plan with any other organizations, like the National Weather Service, the American Meteorological Society or the National Weather Association. Since there is a certain amount of competition among media outlets, most have chosen not to adopt the winter storm names. There is also some question about the criteria that is used to give a storm a name as The Weather Channel has not fully shared its method leading to some scientific confusion. Also, there is a question of the historical record. Everyone will remember Sandy but Nemo is only partially recognized. Great question, personally I think there was some good intention on the part of The Weather Channel that was poorly executed as a marketing move.

What were your worst on-screen bloopers?

Asked by canonball!!! over 4 years ago

Well...being a professional, of course, I've never had any bloopers. That said, there was one time when we were joking around during the commercial break before a cut-in. When the camera light came on the anchor tossed to me and just as he did, the corner of his mouth went up in a knowing smirk. I lost it and started laughing. Then kept on laughing. The cameraman and producer, standing behind the camera, buckled over and hit the floor, which didn't help at all. I couldn't do anything. Couldn't pitch back, couldn't do the weather, couldn't pitch to traffic. It went on for about 40 seconds, which in live TV is an eternity. I finally did the weather and my wife called afterward and said, "At first I was laughing along with you, but then I just started praying, "Oh, Lord, just help him get through it!" Great question, thanks!!

Do people recognize you on the street and do they ever hassle you about times when your forecast was wrong?

Asked by Steph over 4 years ago

Yup. Sometimes people will say they recognize the voice first, I think because I'm not always in a suit. Other times you can tell that people are looking from across the room trying to figure it out and be sure. Can't speak for all of us but I always appreciate a connection. Yes, people will give me static about the weather, almost always in good fun. For those who give me trouble I say, "I'm in marketing, God is in manufacturing." that usually gets me off the hook with a smile. Thanks for asking, Steph!

Do most meteorologists believe global warming exists? Or are they just as split on that as any other random group of people would be?

Asked by Bradbury451 over 4 years ago

Ooooh, you've asked me to walk over hot coals to touch the third rail!! First let me make a distinction between Global Warming and Anthropogenic Global Warming. I think that most people agree that the global climate varies over time and probably goes through cycles. The "hot button" issue is whether or not manmade activities are causing a greater change, that is the "anthropogenic" part. The information that I have seen, and this is largely anecdotal, suggests that a majority of television meteorologists are not in anthropogenic camp. There is a difference between meteorology and climate. TV folks deal largely with the next seven days as opposed to longer periods of time, which is climate, and there has been some complaint that television folks are not properly qualified to comment, but there is concern since we generally have pretty big megaphones in our communities. Hope that answers the question without getting me in trouble!

Not to sound heartless, but just why do TV channels even need weathermen? How much value does a human provide above and beyond just throwing to that 5-day forecast screen?

Asked by R.W. over 4 years ago

Perfectly valid question. Local TV news is changing rapidly and will see negative growth for some years to come. One of the reasons is the increase in the amount of choices people have to find information. Different viewers/users have different wants and needs. Some prefer to simply find a partly cloudy icon and a high of 72 on their smartphone, others like having someone explain a bit of the science behind the forecast. There is a great book called The Long Tail that I highly recommend that talks about serving users in the digital age. On a practical community side, local weather folks speak to schools about science and civic groups about public safety and emcee events. Probably most important, during times of severe weather the local meteorologist, if doing his/her job properly, looks in the camera and hopefully brings a sense of importance or urgency that a simple text forecast might not. There is a great deal of social science research going on right now in this area and the results are surprising. Public reaction, and action, in a dangerous weather situation varies widely and most of us are hoping to look out for folks in our markets. Some people just like to take ownership of a "local celebrity". I had a woman call me one day and chew me out for having my hair too long! I guess I was glad she felt she could. Great question, thanks!

What are the requirements for becoming a TV weather reporter? Do I need a certain degree, and do I need formal broadcast training? I'm studying environmental sciences currently.

Asked by Chau Belle over 4 years ago

Actually, there really are no minimum requirements. In general the more meteorological knowledge you have the better. Some stations won't hire without at least a degree, others will hire based on looks and presentation. In my opinion, if you have an interest in the science, go to the local TV stations and make friends then ask for an internship. You'll get on-camera and computer training. If there is a local chapter of the American Meteorological Society or the National Weather Association, those are good places to make contacts. Good luck, please keep me posted.

How do I get to do the weather on TV when there are only so many TV channels, and it seems like they've all had the same weather guy for 10+ years? Do I just have to be in the right place at the right time when someone retires?

Asked by Tori over 4 years ago

Hi, Tori. My best suggestion is to get an internship at a local station. Hang around as much as you can and soak up the environment. You'll learn about the weather computers and should have some time to practice on the green wall and make some recordings. A demo reel will help you apply for jobs at other stations. If you make yourself known and willing to help during the internship you might just find an opening at some point. That is how it happened for me. Good luck!!

Could a significantly overweight person ever get hired as a weather reporter? Or would the new station claim the person's size would obstruct the weather screen?

Asked by SlamburgerAZ over 4 years ago

Tough question. Certainly there is a bias toward "telegenic" people on TV. That said, Al Roker was very large for many years before weight loss surgery. Interestingly, I have heard of cases where television broadcast companies could consider hiring the people on the news like "casting a play" which would allow them the latitude to decide they wanted a particular gender or ethnicity for an open position, sometimes to play to the demographics of a particular city. In my circles, often times when a job opening comes up, we will hear, "they want a woman", or some other character type. Interesting question, thanks!

Are the weather reporters on TV ALSO responsible for the meteorological science behind the reporting?

Asked by J.B.S. over 4 years ago

It is different from person to person. Many have degrees in meteorology, others will use the forecast provided by the National Weather Service or a vendor like AccuWeather. Some have a weather producer who helps with the TV graphics. Thanks for the question!

what causes wind?

Asked by j. urbanowicz over 4 years ago

Wind is the movement of air across the planet. Uneven heating of the earth's surface by the sun heats and cools areas differently. For example, land generally heats more quickly than water. As air over a coastline heats it becomes lighter and rises leaving less air over the land. Since nature is always looking to keep things in balance, air from the adjacent ocean moves in to equalize the imbalance, creating a sea breeze. The larger the air imbalance, or air pressure difference, the faster the air moves, creating a stronger wind. Great question!

As a weather reporter, what kinds of weather events are the most exciting to you? Is a major hurricane like your Super Bowl?

Asked by Tobes over 4 years ago

Of the big weather events, I would rate tropical systems first, then severe storms, then winter storms. Second favorite thing is an approaching shelf cloud ahead of a line of storms, but the best of all is the passing of a dry cold front. To feel the wind turn around and the cold air hit your face is one of the best things around. How about you?

Do u have to stop yourself from talking weather in social situations b/c other ppl think it's small talk?

Asked by bomb'chelle over 4 years ago

Never mind that...did you see what the Global Forecast System is doing over the plains at 384 hours!?! :) Usually what happens for me is once I get to the point in a conversation where I have to say, "Mostly cloudy tomorrow", or "Rain by mid-morning" people will giggle and say, "He sounds just like a TV Weatherman!" My favorite kind of interaction is when someone doesn't realize who they are talking with and makes some comment about the weather. Like in a elevator or the checkout line, they will say, "Boy, this is the worst hot spell in 100 years!" I usually play along and walk away wondering what they would think if they knew who they were talking with. :)

What got you so interested in weather? Did you grow up in an extreme climate?

Asked by slowcomb86 over 4 years ago

I've always loved the sky, I think I have as many photos of clouds as of my son. I was a radio DJ at the beginning of my career. One of the local TV meteorologists did weather for our station. He and I became friends and he took me under his wing, got me involved in a meteorology program at Mississippi State, and gave me my first TV job (and one day I'll get him for it!) We remain friends to this day and do a podcast together called WeatherBrains. I grew up up and down the east coast. Your question is right on, many of us have stories of encounters with tornadoes or other weather extremes that set the course into meteorology. Thanks for asking!

When a major storm event is coming, do your TV producers encourage you to sensationalize it? Amp up the hype/severity/fear-factor, that sort of thing?

Asked by Moe-town over 4 years ago

I haven't personally experienced that but I know of stations where the culture sort of suggests that type of behavior. One of the problems with that type of thing is once you raise the level just a bit there is often a "keeping up with the Joneses" type of competition that kicks in and it escalates over time. Often times reporters in the field will feel the need to raise the level of urgency to make live shots more interesting. Great question, it is a growing problem.

What's your opinion of storm chasers? Weather-savvy thrill-seekers, or harebrained lunatics? (And have you ever done any storm chasing yourself?)

Asked by Mike c. over 4 years ago

Excellent question, complicated answer. The short version is the storm chasers run the spectrum. Some are untrained and pose a real threat, others are doing valuable research. I know some local governments in tornado alley have proposed some sort of chaser licensing. Very limited for me, I'm more often tied to the studio during events. That said, I was recently invited by a high profile chaser, it would be fun and interesting! If you are interested, a Google search for storm chasing tours shows some good companies that offer some adventure. Do note there is usually a lot of driving, tiny motels and cheap food! Thanks, Mike.

if a weather guy predicts a sunny day and a thunderstorm ensues, what can cause such an inaccurate prediction?

Asked by jameson over 4 years ago

Great question...complicated answer. A weather forecast is made up of many different data points. One of the most important data sets is the twice daily weather balloons that gather data through the height of the atmosphere. One of the weaknesses in the system is that there is an average of only one or two balloon launches in each state, 12 hours apart. The data from those balloons is used in computers that use mathematical equations that predict how the gases and water in the air will behave. Given that the balloon network has so many gaps in it, certain features can be missed. Also, since the data collected at the time of the balloon is not a perfect picture, the forecast 2, 3, 5 or more days out gets more fuzzy. Kind of making a copy of a copy of a copy on a photocopier.

do you think it's unwise for weather reporters to report on location in the middle of hurricanes etc? seems so dangerous and not at all worth it...

Asked by becca j over 4 years ago

Excellent question, Becca, there is actually some discussion about that now in the industry. Some have suggested that credentials such as Seals of Approval might be taken away for unsafe behavior. One problem is that no one wants to be the first to do "less" coverage or pull back. It might take someone getting hurt before some action is taken. It is a tough call. I guess my message to people in the industry, especially reporters as opposed to meteorologists, is to try and learn some basics about storm structure and safety so they can be as prepared as possible.

Thanks for answering! Throughout your career, did any station ever pressure you to develop some quirky weatherman 'gimmick'?

Asked by Steph over 4 years ago

I've never had that happen, but I can imagine it has. Often times station management will see something that happens naturally they like and encourage it. I used to do a lot more live shots out in the field and really enjoyed them so they sent me out often. One time they sent me out for no apparent reason to a local park where nothing was happening. To show my frustration I had the photographer set up a good distance away from me and I sat on a bench with my back to the camera enjoying the sky. Turned out it was one of their favorite shots. :\ Thanks again!

do weather reporters frequently become news reporters and vice versa? or are news reporting and weather reporting two completely different animals?

Asked by billbo jackson over 4 years ago

Generally not, but there are always exceptions. Probably what happens most is that future news people end up doing weather on the weekends in a smaller city to get started and will then do some news reporting for three days during the work week. I've known of a few weather people who moved to the news side or even sports, and others who move the other way but I would say that is the except rather than the rule. I once had an agent tell me I would be a good anchor, I could tell she was waiting to measure my reaction. I politely told her to keep walking. :)

do weathermen specialize by climate? like warm vs. cold climates? e.g. could a weatherman in hawaii take the same job in alaska without missing a beat?

Asked by CBass over 4 years ago

Great question. One of my mentors told me, "You go to school for four years to learn meteorology, and then it takes two more to learn to forecast." So, time spent in a particular area gives you valuable experience in the local climatology. In your example, the weatherman in Hawaii, if he had had a good education, could certainly take a job in Alaska, but it would probably take a few seasons to get comfortable. Thanks!

Is working for the Weather Channel the dream job for TV weather folks?

Asked by KC89 over 4 years ago

Some yes, others no. Many many years ago I was recruited by The Weather Channel. They have a number of very very smart folks who you never, or rarely, see on camera, and working with them was very appealing. The idea of hurricane briefings from the legendary John Hope was great. Ultimately my choice was against doing more broad national coverage over and over again in favor of a more specific area. There is a saying, "Like politics, all weather is local." Thanks!

What kind of career paths do TV meteorologists pursue other than doing the weather for a news station until they retire?

Asked by Tori over 4 years ago

I know of a few who have started their own businesses, radar products or data services. Others have worked with the companies that provide graphics systems to television stations. There are more industries than you might think that hire meteorologists or meteorology consulting services. Power companies, trucking companies, aviation. Also weather research and teaching are options. Over the past few years more and more news anchors and reporters are leaving the business for public relations, media representatives and the like. Thanks, Tori!

Did you ever give a weather forecast that turned out to be SOOO inaccurate that it still haunts you to this day?

Asked by Bandito_II over 4 years ago

I think the incident I regret the most was leaving the weather office unstaffed back in the mid 1990's when a tornado formed in our market in Virginia in the early afternoon between shifts. Interesting question, thanks.

TV news folks seem so polished and stiff, both in their appearance and diction. They rarely come off as real "people." Do you agree, and do your foresee any changes to loosen them up a bit?

Asked by DC Harrier over 4 years ago

I do see changes. Historically news anchors tried to project an air of impartiality so as not to suggest they were on a particular side of an issue. Two currents trends are serving to give news people a little more personality. One is that news programs are including more "entertainment", and, there is some evidence that some viewers prefer to know what side of an issue their news providers are on. That said, "most" of us are "regular" people off the air. :)

also, what kind of umbrella do you use? :)

Asked by haleygirl over 4 years ago

Well...they teach us in "TV Weatherman School" how to walk between the raindrops so I really don't need one, but I have a big black golf umbrella in the trunk of my car. :)

Are TV executives a pain in the a** to work with? What about the news reporters and anchors? Nice people or a bunch of divas?

Asked by SlikStyle5000 over 4 years ago

Hahaha...can we talk about Global Warming instead?

crazy hypothetical but indulge me. let's say my local weather guy predicts a sunny day, and it turns out to be a hurricane. thinking it was gonna be nice out, i didn't prepare for a hurricane and my house gets damaged. could I sue the news program?

Asked by howard (edenton, NC) over 4 years ago

Thanks, Howard. Here is my best analysis, and, of course, I'm not a lawyer. Forecasting can be considered as less than an exact science, and in some ways, a bit of an art. Those of us that seriously practice that art, meaning we have a certain amount of study or serious history in the science of meteorology, are given some level of protection. Now, if a given station provided you with a forecast from an unknown or unreliable source, could you attempt to hold that station accountable? You could certainly make that argument and then it would be up to a judge or jury. Obviously no meteorologist or television station would directly cause any damage, you would need prove some sort of negligence in information gathering, which is unlikely given that a "weather presenter" would mostly likely get their information from a source like the National Weather Service, which obviously has credibility. Good question, thanks.

I'll nominate myself for dumbest question but... why is the study of weather called "meteorology?" Unless we're in Russia, meteors don't exactly seem central to weather.

Asked by 2_Green_Thumbs over 4 years ago

Actually an excellent question. "Meteor" comes from the Greek for "raised from the ground, lofty, hanging", and "logy" is "account, explanation, study". A "hydrometeor" is any water or ice particle in the atmosphere, so "hydrometeorology" is probably a better choice. I need new business cards...

All else being equal, who do you think is more likely to get the weatherman job nowadays: the funny male, or the hot female?

Asked by Arlington Drew over 4 years ago

Hmmm...trick question. I guess my hope is that the one that has the best meteorology chops gets the job. That said, different markets, and more and more these days, different stations, have different requirements. I recently saw an ad for a weather person in which the bulk of the job description asked for someone who was not afraid to give their opinions on the news stories of the day. Thanks, Drew.

How much does the average TV weatherman make? And are you paid an annual salary, per episode, or some other kind of arrangement?

Asked by Ken over 4 years ago

Hi, Ken. Big range of answers. At a base level salaries are reflective of the size of the city (we call them "markets"). A beginning TV meteorologist is likely to start by doing the weekend shift in a small market where they might also do some news reporting a couple days per week. Salary in this situation might be between $20,000 and $30,000. From there it does up well into six figures for many larger markets. Most are paid an annual salary.

I am job shadowing a meteorologist and I was wondering if there are any questions that I should ask?

Asked by Jackie about 4 years ago

A lot of meteorologists have some story as to why they got into weather, often times some big event sparked their interest.  Many of us are technology geeks so you probably can't go wrong asking about computers and phones and such.  Good luck!

How exactly do you validate an alert so the tornado sirens start blowing? Does the weather man have the final say when the sirens blow? How are the sirens activated? Does someone push a button or is it all computerized? Im doing a report for HighSchl

Asked by Gwyni about 4 years ago

Excellent question, and I wish there were a standard answer.  Warning sirens are controlled by emergency management officials and local governments.  There is no standard procedure.  As a partial answer to your question, local TV meteorologists have no control over the sirens.  I would suggest you contact your local National Weather Service office.  They can give you information on how sirens are handled in your town.  Go to and click on your area on the map.  This will take you to your local office page.  Let me know if you have any trouble and we will try another path.  Thanks!

when weatherfols look for gigs, which locales are more desirable: those with nice but monotonous weather (e.g. SoCal), or those with erratic weather (hurricanes, tornadoes and such)? Is there a market that's like the holy grail for weather people?

Asked by Walt Wisc. over 4 years ago

Hi, Walt!  Depends on the person.  If you are really a weather geek you might want a place other than SoCal, that said, even San Diego has some interesting weather.  Broadly the interests break down into severe weather, tropical, and winter (don't understand the winter folks personally).  Every location has some local weather that is unique. For me, the worst thing is being stuck in a boring pattern.  Thanks!

I am desperate for information! I am getting married on June 1 this year, in Jaffrey, NH. Trying to find out what the temperature usually is at that time of year in the early evening, for an outdoor reception. Cant find anywhere. Please help! Thanks

Asked by dave over 4 years ago

In the shadow of Mt. Monadnock...nice!  The average high for Jaffrey for that day is right at 70 degrees, the average low is 50.  At the beginning of June the warmest temperature of a sunny day would be around 4 to 5:00pm, sunset is at 8:20, so if it is a perfectly average day (and few are) I would say it would be falling through the 60's durning the wedding and perhaps in to the upper 50's near the end of the reception.  Good luck and congrats!!

is there a particular state, region, city, province, etc that meteorologists generally agree is the "ideal" climate? (san diego comes to mind...)

Asked by runnin rebel over 4 years ago

I remember a job posting for a San Diego television station many many years ago that said, "Can you say 72 and sunny?" I think most of us prefer locations that have some action. Some like snow, others severe weather, others hurricanes. I guess the ideal job is in a place with the type of weather you are most interested in. Having been to San Diego a number of times I would agree with you, it is pretty nice!

As a weather guy, are there business opptys that you can foresee that civilians cannot? To use a silly example, knowing it's gonna be a high precipitation year and investing in an umbrella company...

Asked by Shadow1 over 4 years ago

Hmmm...what is that umbrella company ticker symbol again? :) Excellent question.  Actually there is a pretty large industry of private weather companies that do forcasting.  Power companies do seasonal outlooks to anticipate demand.  Trucking companies and airlines employ meteorologists for short and long range information.  And, closer to your example, I believe clothing retailers will consider seasonal forecasts to determine inventory types and levels.  Thanks!

i've tried so many weather apps on my phone and they SUCK. inaccurate forecasts, not user friendly, just crappy altogether. what weather app do you think is the best out there?

Asked by joseph over 4 years ago

Whew...tough one.  I think many of the early popular apps are suffering from design and feature bloat.  On iOS I actually think an app called Wx Alert USA is pretty good since it draws all data directly from the National Weather Service.  A generic radar app that I use often is wxRadar, for current conditions around the region, AeroWeather (a bit more technical) and an excellent technical radar app is RadarScope.  I've looked at several of the Android apps and am not thrilled with any of them.  If you are in a severe weather area I highly recommend WeatherRadio.  I'm working on some ways to improve weather information, stay tuned!  Thanks, Joseph!

besides being a weatherman or an academic, what else can people do with degrees in meteorology?

Asked by haleygirl over 4 years ago

All kinds of things, great question. Research is a big area, professional storm chaser, there are lots of private companies that provide weather services and information to power companies or trucking companies, aviation as well. We have a guy that does vacation fill-in for us who works for an environmental impacts firm. Another fellow I work with does weather consulting for legal cases acting as an expert witness that involve things like hail or lightning damage. Thanks!

What's the minimum equipment a meteorologist would need to make weather forecasts? Would he need zillion dollar satellites no matter what, or are there cheaper alternatives?

Asked by ATL Sean over 4 years ago

Interesting question. We have a pretty integrated system. The numbers I've seen suggest that the return on investment for weather operations, on a percentage basis, is one of the best of all government expenditures. But, to answer your question, you might be right, I wouldn't want to lose the daily weather balloons since that is where the forecast starts, and radar more readily saves, okay maybe the satellites, if you must take something!

with tech advances and such, how do u see the future of weather reporting changing/improving?

Asked by grant77 over 4 years ago

Hi, Grant. Huge question. I remember reading something (and I'm paraphrasing and my facts might be off) that said shortly after Henry Ford invented the Model T that at one point there were 128 different companies manufacturing cars. Eventually most of them faded away for one reason or another and a few survived. I think we are in the same "wild west" period right now in weather information. A lot of players will make a lot of different plays, some will catch, others will fade away. That said, my hope is that what gains traction will be the best for the end users as opposed to systems designed by profit motive or convenience for companies. It would be nice to think "the best" will win but if you look at the history of home video, for example, Beta was always recognized to be a better quality format, but we all ended up with VHS machines blinking 12:00 hook to our TVs. Hope that wasn't too generic!

What's considered a good "batting average" for a weather forecaster? Getting it right 80 percent of the time? 90? More? Less?

Asked by Bradbury451 over 4 years ago

Tough to answer, and different areas of the country have different standards. I suppose 70% would be the bottom acceptable average. That said, "accuracy" is tough to define. Is one degree off okay? Two? Some give three degrees over or under the actual high as "accurate". Precipitation is another challenge. If "popcorn" afternoon thunderstorms cover 30% of the area, but not the official rain gauge (or your backyard) does that count as rain, or not? Guess that is why people get away with that old joke about weathermen still getting paid to be wrong all the time! :)

How accurate can Day 10 of a 10-day forecast possibly be? Put another way, how far out can you forecast weather with relative certainty?

Asked by Bradbury451 over 4 years ago

Great question. My observation is that once you get past 3 days, what begins to vary the most is timing. Major features will start to shift faster or slower which can, by 5 to 7 days, mean a difference of 12 to 24 hours or sometimes more. At ten days you start to see things appear and disappear or dramatically shift from day to day or run to run of the forecast models. Personally, I'm not fond of the 10 day forecast, but, the things learned by doing it now informs the research that makes them better. Short answer, 10 day forecast...not great.

Is there a website i can visit that will tell me what the average temperature is on a certain day of the year, maybe even in a certain part of a state, and what the weather is likely to be like? You must have some really good sources for such things

Asked by dave over 4 years ago

There are quite a few, Dave.  At the base level you can always go to and select a region of the map.  That will take you a local office and the "Climate" link on the sidebar will get you started.  Also, a simple Google search for something like "average temperatures in (city)" will bring up links to Weather Underground, The Weather Channel, etc.  Actually, one that I have found recently makes some nice charts is  You can select any city and then averages.  Have fun!

ever include inside jokes or subliminal messages during a weather report, where the audience has no clue it's even happening?

Asked by lucky777 over 4 years ago

Hmmm...can't think of any. But I will say my wife and some of my neighbors do know certain keywords to listen for during severe weather near my home!

I want to study meteorology in college, but it is hard to find a school that is not so far away that offers it as a major. (in the NE) What kind of salary can i expect if I am not a meteorologist on TV, and am working directly for NWS or NOAA?

Asked by matt almost 4 years ago

Hi Matt.  I'm actually not familiar with the payscale at the National Weather Service.  You can get a pretty good idea by looking at NWS and NOAA job postings online at  Most jobs have a salary range attached to them.  You might also have luck contacting your local NWS office.  Click on your region at for the closest office.  Good luck!!

Do you read your lines off a teleprompter?

Asked by Seb_Krauss over 4 years ago

No, most weather segments are not scripted. And, I think most weather people agree that this is pretty conclusive evidence that the weather folks are much smarter than the news anchors. :)

What are questions you are asked most often?

Asked by Jackie about 4 years ago

Is it going to rain?  Will the storms be severe?  What are the best apps for my phone?  What about global warming? Do people ever blame you for bad weather?  I recognize your voice, where do I know you from?  Thanks, Jackie!

Do you get offended when people call you a weatherman when you're a meteorologist?

Asked by XOXO over 4 years ago

Personally, no, but I do think some do. I'm just happy anyone notices!

I am 55 and have never in my life have witnessed a lightning storm that had absolutely no sound. I have video but the file is too long to prove this. There should have been loud claps and rolling deep thunder. But nothing. Can you explain this?

Asked by Vicki over 3 years ago

Great question, Vicki.  Without knowing the exact circumstances I can tell you that light travels farther than sound.  On average, depending on conditions, the sound of thunder will travel an average of 15 miles.  Thanks!

What is a tube of wind called? This tube was 100 to 200 yards wide, 2 to 3 miles long and moving at 130 plus miles per hour. I would like to know what it is called!

Asked by James Browne almost 4 years ago

What part of the country, James?  There is something that occurs in the mountains called a rotor or mountain wave.  My undertanding is that these can be very dangerous to aircraft.  Best guess without seeing a picture.  Thanks.

I need help, please give me a research topic (anything about meteorology), that is easy to conduct.

Asked by knnnnnnnnnn over 3 years ago

Tough to answer without knowing more about the assignment. You could track forecast temperatures and compare them to actual readings for a period of time. Good luck!

How is weather predicted? And how often are forecasts accurate?

Asked by Kayla Moore over 3 years ago

Well...big answer, Kayla.  The forecast starts with the weather balloons that are launched around the world, at the same time, twice a day with instruments that help us determine temperature, moisture, pressure and wind parameters from the ground to sometimes higher than 80,000 feet.  That information is used in computer formulas that look at the current weather and apply mathmatical formulas that predict how air and moisture will change from the current conditions  The idea is to understand what the atmosphere is doing at the time of the balloons and using certain laws of physics to predict how heating and cooling with change the current state.  Accuracy is sometimes tough to measure but I think most agree the forecast is at least 70-75% accurate.  Thanks!

What does your weather man say on tv please i need help.

Asked by Morgan Danilowicz over 3 years ago

Not sure I understand your question. Morgan?

Hi, if I'm interested in storm chasing but know it's not lucrative. What job as a meteorologist would incorporate doing so as part of the job duties? Also thank you for your site and time!

Asked by Littlejohn over 3 years ago

Hi, Littlejohn.  I would say something in the severe weather research area would allow the best opportunity to chase.  A lot of those jobs are based in and around Norman, OK where the University of Oklahoma, several National Weather Service offices (including the Storm Prediction Center), and several private weather companies are located.  Not sure of your age or education status, but I think I would start with the School of Meteorology at OU and see what resources they have available.  Good luck, can't wait to see your chase pictures!

Are there any extremely cool facts or information about typhoons that not many people know about? Because we're doing a project based on typhoons and we also need some ideas how to demonstrate it---but we have no cool ideas that can BLAST attention

Asked by Gladelyn and Lesley from Canad over 3 years ago

Hello, Ladies.  Yup, there sure are.  Not knowing the age group of your audience makes it a little diffucult for me to give an answer.  I'd start with an Internet search, and, basic meteorology books, espeically ones geared toward kids are also a good resource.  Goog luck!

Hello, i asked about storm chasing a while ago. I'm 21 and just began at a community college. I'm from OK so OU is my #1 choice. But I'd like to know if there are any magazines i could subscribe to to stay on top of recent information ave topics

Asked by lj over 3 years ago

Hi.  First suggestion would be to look into the American Meteorological Society and the National Weather Association.  Most of their material is more technical in nature.  For general audience material I would try Weatherwise Magazine.  Good luck!

Hello. I was wondering specifically the storm Nika. As it entered New York state, was that considered a cold front or a warm front?

Asked by ginnymyers over 3 years ago

Hi, Ginny.  A little terminology disconnect here, thanks for asking!  A storm has fronts associated with it, so that storm had both.  Typically a storm will have a cold front (the blue line you see on weather maps), the leading edge of colder air, usually moving south, and a warm front (the red line on weather maps), the leading edge of warmer air.  Air flows toward the center of a storm (that big "L" you see on weather maps) and the system rotates counterclockwise.  The winter storm names you have heard the last two years are a creation of The Weather Channel and not used by the rest of the weather community.  There is a great online weather dictionary maintained by The National Weather Serivice at, if you would like to look up some terms.  Great question, thanks!

1. Everyday Problems for a meteorologist
2. What all does a tv meteorologist do
3. How do you use radar
4. How is meteorology important
5. What is the best meteorology college
6. What university did you go to
7. How much schooling does it take

Asked by Parker over 3 years ago

Hi, Parker.  Big bunch of questions, thanks.

1. Number one these days is keeping up with the ever growing distribution platforms, Facebook, Twitter, TV, etc.

2. Looks at raw computer model forecast data and generates a public forecast, creates graphics for TV news shows, maintains digital platforms and does public appearances.

3. To determine precipitation trends and look for specific threats like tornadoes, damaging winds and heavier rain/snow area.

4. I'd like to know your answer to that one!

5. I hesitate to answer for fear of creating an argument.  I think Oklahoma University would be on just about everyone's top five list.

6. I studied through Mississippi State University.

7. A four year degree is standard.

8. Always interested in the sky, and I like looking into the future.

9. Not specifically.  I was a DJ on the radio for many years before weather.

10. Yes, there is a certain consideration given to voice and appearance for TV jobs.


I'm studying to become a meteorologist and I am wondering how you start and what advice you may have for someone interested in this field.

Asked by Abby over 3 years ago

Hi Abby.  I would say get as much education as you can in math and science.  There are a lot of meteorology programs at great schools.  Aside from a formal education I would advise you to do as much "networking" as possible.  Join the local chapters of the American Meteorological Society (AMS) and National Weather Association (NWA).  They love student members and you will meet some great people from a lot of different areas.  Go and make friends with the folks at the closest National Weather Service office.  Storm chasers are great folks who love to share their passion.  You might also try for an internship in the weather office of one of your local television stations.  The more people you meet and know the better.  If you need more information let me know.  Good luck!

Are the people who report the weather and the ones who decide what should be said the same people? Or is there a meteorologist who writes the script for the reporter? Thanks.

Asked by John over 3 years ago

Well...yes.  It actually depends on the station and the individual.  I would say that most of us develop a forecast of our own from data provided mainly from NOAA as well as other agencies.  Some will use the forecast generated at the local National Weather Service and a few others may have a forecast provided by a private forecast service.  Thanks

With all the digital tech today, just a head shot would be enough and it could be placed in an uninteresting place on the screen, couldn't it? Pointers could be electronic too.

Asked by daveb over 3 years ago

With digital anything can happen!

I am an aspiring Meteorologist. Would a Bachelors Degree in Physics along with an Atmospheric Sciences Certificate meet the education requirements? I am unable to attend a college with a Meteorology Major or Atmospheric Science Major.

Asked by Lauren almost 3 years ago

Sounds like a great plan, Lauren.  If you are interested in broadcast there is a program at Mississippi State called the Broadcast Meteroology Program, you can take courses remotely, but the plan you outine sound excellent.  Internships are always helpful too.  Nothing like being directly in the "environment".  There should be a National Weather Service Office not too far from you, those folks are always happy to give advice.  Good luck, please keep us posted!

Why do ALL the east coast weatherpeople stand on the west part of the screen hiding where the weather is coming from when the east part of the screen is ocean where the weather has left the populated land? Why stand in from of the "screen" at all?

Asked by daveb over 3 years ago

Excellent questions.  Your point about "standing where the weather is coming from" is a good one and they should move to the other side of the screen when referencing approaching weather.  Having made a number of weather graphics in my day, the tendancy is to put your local area in the center of the screen.  On the east coast this would leave a large part of the right hand side of the maps showing ocean, not as visually appealing (this is a bigger issue since the introduction of widescreen digital TVs).

As far as standing on screen at all, it is to be able to directly point at specific features and to be able to make a greater connection with the audience by making "eye contact" with the viewer.  Thanks!

How do sun-showers happen when there's practically not a cloud in the sky? I was walking today when it began to sprinkle lightly, but looking up the sky was COMPLETELY blue -- only clouds were way off at the horizon. How is that possible?

Asked by stak almost 3 years ago

When rain falls it creates friction with the air around it, and a downdraft.  Friction creates heat with can evaporate water (cloud droplets) and downdraft is also a warming process.  Sounds to me like the cloud that created the rain evaporated by the time you felt the drops and looked up.  Cool!

Have you ever seen a flying object in person or on radar that you couldn't identify? Or a weather phenomenon that to this day you can't explain? (cue X-files music)

Asked by Meghan over 2 years ago

There is a really neat effect on radar in several parts of the country, including parts of central Texas. In the evening the bat colonies spread out to begin feeding. You can see them on radar staring as a small point, then an ever increasing fan or arc spreads out as they move. That or ghosts. (insert evil laughter here...)

My son will go surfing in Costa Rica this august 1st to august 6th. For optimum waves, the wind should come off the land thereby lifting the oncoming waves. Can you narrow down a specific point for me anywhere along the C.R. coastline? Thank you, JG

Asked by fishguy54jk almost 3 years ago

Hi, JG. I must admit that is a bit out of my area of expertise. You might try an internet search. I found this:

I am going to Cancun about Sept 18th, I have noticed for about 2 weeks now, they have gotten a lot of rain this year. Is there something abnormal going on in the Yucatan to cause this?

Asked by doug almost 3 years ago

Nothing out of the ordinary, Doug.  It is tropical weather season and they may have had some tropical downpours lately.  The average peak of hurricane season is Sept 10.  Most likely what you would see is some brief afternoon downpours as opposed to a vacation washout.  Have fun!

I am looking to break into broadcast journalism. What are questions I should ask myself to know if this is the route I should go into or if isn't for me?

Asked by Tori over 2 years ago

Hi, Tori. Without question, do anything you can to get an internship at a local radio or television station. You will be able to decide very quickly if that is the path for you. Good luck!!

Does it snow a lot in Virginia beach area. Also how cold does it get in Virginia becah.

Asked by brian almost 3 years ago

Hi, Brian.  Being so close to the coast is doesn't snow in Virginia Beach as much as father inland, but it does happen.  You can find out more about the climatology here:


Hi, I was wondering what your major was in college. My college offers geology as a major; would that work in order to become a meteorologist? Thank you!

Asked by Courtnee almost 3 years ago

Hi, Courtnee!  I first studied Radio-TV-Film at Texas Christian University, then Broadcast Meteorology at Mississippi State.  I think you might have some trouble getting into weather with a geology degree.  You might ask for some advice and a visit from a local television station and/or National Weather Service office (  Good luck!

Has the moon ever turned red like it did this morning?

Asked by john over 2 years ago

Yes! This is caused by a lunar eclipse.  Recently the term "blood moon" has been used on social media giving it some new life.  Thanks!

What is the name of the little gadget weathermen discreetly carry in their hand to change the weather wall display - and how does it work?

Asked by HarryThe Hat over 2 years ago

I think most of us generically call it "the clicker". It is a simple wireless controller hooked up to the weather computer to advance to the next map. Some have several buttons for higher functions like dropping cutouts on the maps or drawing. Back in the day some stations simply used a garage door opener. Good question. Thanks Harry.

Do you think that mankind will eventually be able to CHANGE the weather? I've heard about experiments where scientists have been able to create rainclouds in a lab setting. Or is manually controlling the weather just a Sci-Fi pipedream?

Asked by Rob Ford almost 3 years ago

Hi, Rob.  I think, one day, most certainly, yes.  Many would argue that we already have via global warming/climate change.  I haven't picked a side on that issue, but we will certainly contine to do things to try and affect the weather.  Experiments have been proposed to stop tornadoes in their path, and reduce the strength of hurricanes before landfall.  We will need to be careful, weather is part of a planetary system and fooling around with that system could have unintended consequences. Great question, thanks!

Being a science guy, what's your favorite "photon walks into a bar" joke?

Asked by Bill W. over 2 years ago

Well, Bill. As a "science guy", I know that photons don't drink and would never be caught in a bar. (rimshot)

Hello Kevin,

I am 37 and I am finding my interest to be a TV Host. Am I too late to start to do this and if not where do I start. Thank you.

Asked by New over 2 years ago

Hi, please forgive the delayed response.  Not knowing what type of "host" you would like to be, I would suggest you look for a job, or even better, an internship, at one of the television stations in your city.  And, no, 37 is not too old!  Good luck!  Keep us posted.

Do TV meteorologists have access to special or advanced equipment that websites like don't? I'm just wondering whether there's any ways in which getting your weather from a real human being is still legitimately superior?

Asked by THeo almost 3 years ago

Most of the data we use is readily available to anyone, but some services require a fee. All computer models have one bias or another.  The enhancement that the humans try to bring is trying to understand the biases and account for them.  In a breaking or severe weather situation the humans add updates that are very short time (minutes).  Hopefully we also add a connection to the audience and a sense of personality, both friendly and serious.  Great question, thanks!

I live in Tanzania in East Africa. I was driving through Sumbawanga in the west of the country and I think I saw a double tornado. We have dust devils, but I've never heard of tornados. Please let me know if I can send you the photos to confirm?

Asked by Hally over 2 years ago

Hi, Hally. Multiple tornadoes can occur within one thunderstorm complex. I would do a Google search for some pictures.

Does the Farmer's Almanac actually have any validity whatsoever? I still don't really understand what it is or how accurate it's supposed to be.

Asked by sox over 2 years ago

Hi. The Farmer's Almanac does not share their forecast methods outside the company. I actually don't know how accurate they are, but they have had a loyal following for many years. Let me know if you find out any secrets! :)

I have a question about global wind patterns. I understand the Coriolis Effect and its effect of turning winds in the northern hemisphere to the left. Why, then, do the Prevailing Westerlies in the northern hemisphere turn to the RIGHT?

Asked by Melinda over 2 years ago

Great question, Melinda.  In addition to the Coriolis Effect there is vertical motion known as a Hadley cells, rising and sinking air, creating something of a "loop".  Hope that helps Thanks!

How does your performance get evaluated? Like, beyond being professional and comfortable on-camera, what makes for either a good or bad weatherperson?

Asked by Scoopz about 2 years ago

Hi, Scoopz. It can vary from city to city. Some might be more interested in how much you know about meteorology, or snow vs. severe weather vs. hurricanes. Some are give a bigger nod to being telegenic. Also, in some markets research is done on air talent with focus groups. One of more important factors can be involvement in the community, also web and social media skills. Thanks.

You wrote that weather segments aren't scripted. So how do you know what to say? Or have you just done this so much now that you can basically speak off the cuff without stumbling?

Asked by KV over 2 years ago

Well.....most of us are highly intelligent. :) We take visual cues from the maps that are behind us. We can see the maps in the teleprompter that the anchors use for their scripts. Since we have prepared the forecast we can pick a couple of things from each graphic to talk about. Actually pretty easy with some practice. Great question, thanks!

Can a tornado and a hurricane combine together?

Asked by Selern over 2 years ago

Hi, Selern. Nope, but thunderstorm cells within a hurricane can produce tornadoes. A tornado is a relatively small scale feature compared to a hurricane, usually less than a mile compared to hundreds of miles across. Thanks!

Are you chummy with other meteorologists in your market? Is there really all that much difference between the way each of you gives the weather for the same region?

Asked by FB over 2 years ago

Some cities are more competitive than others but in general I think we are usually friendly with each other. I had lunch with a competitor a few weeks ago. And, to beat that, I married one of the meteorologists from a competing station when we met at a live event! Sometimes managements frown on hanging out with "the enemy". We all draw from the same sources of forecast data. The differences can come from time spent in the market, preference for one computer forecast model over another in a given situation and overall experience. Usually the biggest differences will come during bigger events, like a snow storm or tropical weather, or there is no agreement among the different computer forecasts. Great question, thanks!

Real, or not?

Asked by Andy over 2 years ago

I'm going to say "real". Shot with a wide lens and color enhanced in something like Photoshop. Great stuff!

How do you think this winter is going to turn out for the Northeast this season?

Asked by Gabrielle Enos over 2 years ago

Honestly, Gabrielle, I'm not a huge fan of seasonal outlooks. That said, here is a great resource from the good folks at the Climate Prediction Center: Thanks!

Don't some meteorologists use touch screen lcd screens instead of the old fashioned green screens?

Asked by Ron over 2 years ago

Yes, Ron. Not my favorite presentation since it washes out and minimizes the data, but producers and managers get bored easily sometimes.

Would you please answer whether there is any uncertainty sensor data in meteorological application?

Asked by Unique Chan over 2 years ago

Not sure I understand the question...?

Can you please tell me why it is always hot
in Miami Florida & most everywhere else it's cold ?

Asked by Patricia over 2 years ago

Great question, Patricia. Miami is one of the southern most place in the US, making it one of the farthest places from the source region of cold air. Also, it is basically surrounded by water on three sides. With the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico so close there is more moisture in the air and moist air does not cool as much.

I have a serious question and this is the only site I found that I could ask somebody, anyways, did yall find anything in the sky or by the moon about 3:30am central April 13 2 days before blood moon? I have a picture of it, I need someone to look

Asked by Michael over 2 years ago

Not aware of anything off the top of my head, Michael. Can you post the picture somewhere with a link, maybe Twitter or Flickr and I'd be happy to take a look. Provide as much information as you can, like where you were, what direction you were looking, time of day, etc. You might have some luck checking with a local science museum or astronomy club, or the nearest National Weather Service office.

When I grew up I feel like TV weathermen were usually older men, but now I'm seeing a lot of attractive young people (both men and women!) - is that a trend in the industry?

Asked by Eric over 2 years ago

I would say yes, Eric. Which is a little unnerving since I'm a broken down old man!

I'm going to be rising senior in high school next year which means the college application season is right around the corner. I was curious do I necessarily need to major in meteorology to become a meteorologist. Can I major in Environmental Science?

Asked by Nathan Alvarez about 2 years ago

Good question, Nathan. It would be somewhat dependent on what you think you might like to do. If you are interested in working for the National Weather Service, private industry, or doing research, I would say yes, go for the degree. By contrast there are a number of people in TV who do not have specific degrees in meteorology. Research schools carefully. Places like the University of Oklahoma are very heavy on math and geared toward research. Mississippi State has a TV program. Whatever your goal a degree will help. Good luck!

hello I am working on heat transfer question as I am in University for Mechanical Engineering. How would I solve for the wind chill if all I am given is a temperature of outside, and the speed of wind. We can assume anything ex: Area of skin.

Asked by anthony over 2 years ago

Those are the two data points you need, Anthony. You can find the formula here.

When you call for snow in the forecast, how do you know whether it's going to be the type that accumulates, or the type that falls and just kind of melts? Is it just a temperature thing?

Asked by whistlepotting over 2 years ago

Yup, all temperature, but the trick is knowing the temperature as you go up through the atmosphere from the ground. The temperature can, and does, vary a great deal as you go higher, and can actually go up with height. The precipitation type is determined by this temperature profile. Below freezing all the way up, snow. If there is a warm layer above the ground there can be some melting and re-freezing on the way down, this is what creates sleet. Or warm aloft and a very cold, but thin, layer at the ground creates freezing rain. This is why we use weather balloons, to measure the temperature aloft. Great question, thanks!

1.) What is the hardest thing about being a meteorologist?
2.) What are personable qualities that you think are important to have to be a meteorologist?
3.) How do you become a meteorologist?
4.) Is there any skills that a meteorologist should have?

Asked by Monkeyangelgirl over 2 years ago

Great questions. I'll answer as a television meteorologist. A National Weather Service meteorologist or someone in research or private industry would have much different answers.

1. The most difficult thing lately is the increasing number of places to put weather information and the 24 hour nature. TV, website and social media mean there is little "off" time.

2. Good time management, the 5:00 news starts right at 5:00! Able to explain things simply. Enjoy visiting with people.

3. There are a number of good colleges that offer degree programs in Meteorology.

4. Good math and science skills/interest are a big help.


Could it in theory be possible for a hurricane to travel up the warm waters of the Gulf of California and hit the US along the California/Arizona border?

Asked by Joe about 2 years ago

Possible and does, Joe!

My friend in Prescott, AZ swears that we in Denver, CO get their weather. If it snows in Prescott, she says we'll get the same because their 'weather' moves this way. But it seems ours comes from the NW. What's the truth of the matter? Thanks

Asked by Jane over 2 years ago

Looks like you are both right, Jane. In broad terms, storm systems move from west to east across the US, usually with the jet stream. The jet is amplified in wave patterns, kind of like snapping a bed sheet over a bed. Sometimes storms will approach you from the southwest, traveling up the "hill" of the wave, and other times from the northwest, coming down the hill. Great question, thanks!

I have a picture of a rainbow. I think a weather expert could look at it and say fake, or real. Is there a place I could send the picture for your opinion?

Asked by Andy over 2 years ago

Happy to take a look, Andy. I'm not a rainbow expert but you could post it on a social media page or Flickr and give me the link. Thanks!

Where can I get info to teach me to read doppler radar maps? I just purchased an app called Radarscope and I am lost and I need this since I live in OKC area.

Asked by Jerry Tune about 2 years ago

Hi Jerry-

Great choice! RadarScope is the best. I would start here:

In addition to the products on the Radar Images page I would use the Vertically Integrated Liquid product, it is a good indicator of hail.

Also, here is a short video from the developer:

Stay safe!

Does your job get repetitive, and what do you do to make relaying the short-term weather forecast interesting?

Asked by Jackson over 2 years ago

Not too bad. There are always subtle differences in the day to day forecast if you care to go looking for them that don't show up on TV. Also, most TV folks do public appearances so we go different places. Good question, never had that one. Thanks!

1st i work with electricity. The other night we had a small electrical storm. In my house I got shocked it hurt. I'm sure it was static there was no close lightning. Is that possible?

Asked by Aquadave about 2 years ago

Hmmmm...tough to say without having been there. I would guess yes.

why does weather vary so much from year to year. The earth is in the same orbit and in the same place in the orbit from year to year, yet weather can be so different, what causes the drastic swings in temp, rain, storms etc?

Asked by DW about 2 years ago

Interesting question. The weather (and climate) system is largely driven by uneven heating of the earth and has never really been in balance, so swings in patterns have always gone on and there is no real "normal". Also, things that don't happen regularly will affect the weather pattern, even a volcano eruption can limit incoming solar radiation over large areas.

There was a video two months or so ago on that showed temperatures in the southeast would be below normal this summer. Well that video was totally wrong because in NC says the average temperature in June is 84 degrees but it

Asked by Ricky about 2 years ago

Hi, Ricky. There isn't a great deal of skill on long range forecasts of that nature. That said, summer is still pretty young. Still time to verify and as of this writing, it looks cooler in the east heading into July. Thanks!

Is there such a thing as a 'bubble' or 'dome' in certain areas that seem to avoid the majority of certain weather? I live in Fleming Island, Florida, and as long as I can remember, thunderstorms tend to hit around us, but not on us as often. Why?

Asked by Debi almost 2 years ago

Hi, Debi-Not a "dome" really. Patterns can be influenced by the landscape. I would guess your area might be influenced by the sea breeze and the shape of the coastline. Thanks!

I have a question that I have been dying to ask a Meteorologist for some months.

My question is, what city in the Midwest with a population of 100,000 or more has an EXACT replica of Florida summers?

Asked by Jeffrey almost 2 years ago this trivia or research? If trivia, don't know, which city?

How do scientist know that climate change is largely caused by human activities?

Asked by art rodriguez almost 2 years ago

"Climate" is much different than "weather". Not really my area.

but it has been in the 90s every day for the last 4 weeks. What happened to that prediction?

Asked by Ricky about 2 years ago

Hi, I live in Kentucky. Yesterday after a rain, the entire sky, literally everything turned yellow for about 1/2 hour. Hard to take a picture with because camera fixed it but otherwise to the eye, it was all yellow. Why??

Asked by Vicky almost 2 years ago

Sounds cool, Vicki! Best guess is there was a fair amount of moisture lingering in the air after the rain ended which was scattering most of the light except for the yellow spectrum. Bet is was pretty!

Is Winchendon Mass having a tornado and thunderstorms?

Asked by Kayden almost 2 years ago

I would turn to and click on your area of the map for updates from the National Weather Service.

I live in ohio and the winter weather is much warmer because of El Nino but the way they explain it is confusing. Will Ohio have and cold weather and snow for 2015- 16

Asked by Patrick caraway over 1 year ago

Yup, it is confusing. Less likely that you would have a cold snowy winter. You might look at this website, it offers continuously updated seasonal forecasts. Thanks!

I'm a pilot and trying to learn to read the clouds. I often see cumulus clouds in the summer here in Indiana. Sometimes the bottoms are a little gray and the bottoms are often fairly flat, instead of being puffy like they are everywhere else. Why?

Asked by sampsont almost 2 years ago

Great question. The bottom of the cloud is the point where the water vapor in the warmer rising air cools to the point where it condenses (kind of like the condensation out the outside of a glass of water with ice) and turns into a visible water droplet. The darker gray is an area of higher moisture and less sunlight gets through. Happy flying!

Can you tell me what state has the least amount of severe weather and has a mild to warm climate?

Asked by Heather Ford-Chatterton almost 2 years ago

Usually the warmer the climate, the more prone the area is to thunderstorms. If you don't mind extreme heat you might try Arizona or New Mexico. If you don't mind it a little cooler you might like Washington or Oregon. Thanks, Heather.

Hello I would like to know your view on climate change? Do you think humans have to do with this?

Asked by Debbie over 1 year ago

Pretty important question. Not really my area of expertise but I know pretty smart people on both sides of the issue. I do think you can only pour something into a system for so long before you have an effect on that system. Not sure if we have gotten there yet or not.

I was wondering if you could tell me the best course of action to take during a tornado if I live on the 3rd floor of my apartment building. I don't know any neighbors and there is no storm shelter for this complex.where do I go? :(

Asked by Emily almost 2 years ago

Might be an opportunity to meet a neighbor, Emily. If you must stay in your apartment the best place is a small space toward the center of the unit, bathroom, hallway, closet. The idea is to have as many walls between you and outside an smaller spaces have better structural integrity. Something to cover your head, like couch cushion or bike helmet. Great question, thanks.

What do you do?? On tv how do you know what is going to happen??? Can I have an answer today 10/28/15 or tomorrow 10/29/15???


Asked by Need Help over 1 year ago

Won't have time to answer on your timeframe. You might try some web searches like, "what does a television meteorologist do?". Good luck!

I'm not scientifically knowledgeable, but I've wondered why California and the southwest with the major drought problem couldn't siphon ocean water into Death Valley and the Salton Sea, let it evaporate and come down as rain?

Asked by over 1 year ago

Creative thinking. Probably a huge cost to transporting that water but even if you could get it there the prevailing atmospheric winds would carry the water vapor to east, away from the areas that need it. Keep thinking!

hi in doibg a science experiment on tornadoes so I'm wondering if the warmer the water temperature is the larger the tornadoe will be?? How are they formed? Thank you!!!

Asked by drew almost 2 years ago

Hi, Drew. Usually a warmer water discussion is relevant for hurricanes. I would use these resources. Good luck!

Planning a winter golf trip. Worried about El Nino rain. Thoughts on Orlando vs. El Paso, San Antonio and Tuscon? All are usually dry, but where would el Nino possibly have the biggest impact? thanks.

Asked by Frank over 1 year ago

Hi, Frank. The general idea during an El Nino winter is that much of the southern half of the country would be wetter than average, and that is the forecast for this winter. All of the cities you mention are in that zone. You might spend some time at the Climate Prediction Center website,

Good luck, hit 'em straight!

I am a student that needs to know what a meteorologist does, my report is due on Friday, so can you give feedback today 10/28/15 or tomorrow 10/29/15


Asked by Need Help over 1 year ago

Hi. Not really a good spot here for me to describe the typical duties without some specific questions. You might try visiting a local TV station of National Weather Service office. Good luck!

If you live in a mobile home and have not evacuated when a tornado watch was issued and you are caught in a tornado, where is a safe place to seek shelter? (also you don't have a tornado shelter)

Asked by elise over 1 year ago

Ideally you would find a safe place ahead of the storm arriving. If not, you would want to me in the smallest part of the home nearest the center of the structure, with no windows. The smallest part would offer better structural integrity and hopefully protection from objects hitting the outer walls.

How do you tell when a hurricane or tornado hits??

Thanks you for using your time!!!

Asked by Danica over 1 year ago

Not sure I understand the question, Danica. Both are characterized by strong wind.

How long does it take for the water cycle to happen?

Asked by Ms. Muise's 3rd graders over 1 year ago

Excellent question...and a very difficult one to answer. If we followed a raindrop from the a cloud to a puddle after a rainstorm and it evaporated right away we could say the cycle was only a few hours. A raindrop that fell in the southern Rocky Mountains might travel underground to the Rio Grande River and then the the Gulf of Mexico and evaporate there could take weeks or more. Very good question...great thinkers in your class! Keep up the good work!

How did you become a weather man?

Asked by Ms. Muise's 3rd graders over 1 year ago

I started my career as a disc jockey on the radio. The weatherman at a local TV station and I became friends and he got me involved in a correspondence course in meteorology at Mississippi State University. I interned with him while taking the course and practiced being on TV. After completing that course I became the weekend meteorologist at my friend's station and have been doing it at several stations for about 25 years now. Thanks for asking!

How do I find out what the season is for getting Vitamin-D from time in the sun? Obviously the summer isn't a problem but when does it become pointless in the Fall due to the angle of the sunlight?

Asked by Jay over 1 year ago

Interesting question, Jay. I'm afraid that is out of my area of expertise. Might be a question for someone in the medical field.

I'm in an argument with a person who claims to have been a meteorologist for the navy but has no knowledge of physics or algebra. I would think you would need to know a little physics and a lot of algebra. Could you confirm or deny this please?

Asked by Cyntari over 1 year ago

Yes, math is a big part of weather forecasting. Can't confirm or deny your friend's story, but our armed forces have trained many excellent weather observers and forecasters over the years. Good forecasts are a critical part of military activity. Thank them for their service!

What is the range of temperature when an average temperature is given? eg. a stated average low of 40 degrees, what is the average range of actual low temperature 10 degrees? etc...

Asked by johnemmerich over 1 year ago

Interesting question. There is no range of temperatures. The average low for a given day is figured using the temperature on a given date using the historical record, usually between 20 and 100 years depending on the availability of the data.

What I am asking is that, with your experience in meteorology, would it be possible to have 3 days of darkness in the Middle East, like 24 hours of darkness for 3 days

Asked by Kyle over 1 year ago

Nope. Can't see how that would happen.

The local TV station often mentions reduced visibility and it might be something like 1/2 mile or 1 mile. What the heck difference does this make? Quite often you can't see that far ahead anyway because of hills or curves in the road.

Asked by old school over 1 year ago

I guess I would say different people have different uses for the information.

Hi! I have a screenshot of the weather and my question is why does the dewpoint follow the air temperature, both up and down? (email me at for the picture) This will get me extra credit so your help is greatly appreciated!

Asked by Izzy over 1 year ago

Hi Izzy-Happy to look at the picture of you post it someplace. The dewpoint doesn't really follow the temperature. It is a measure of the amount of moisture (water vapor) in the air. The colder the air gets the drier it so the dewpoint goes down. Warmer air can hold more water vapor so the dewpoint can rise. Great question, thanks.

i sit at my window and i watches the sun slowly set. as the sun goes slowly down, where does it goes? how far down? i always wanted to know this-just curious!

Asked by monica over 1 year ago

The earth is spinning, so it goes under your feet and shows up again behind you at sunrise. Same way it goes across the sky during the day!

I like to take gigapan pictures. What weather pattern should I look for to predict extremely clear visibility (i.e. no haze, fog or pollution)?

Asked by Paul over 1 year ago

Might depend on your location. Broadly I would say look to be behind a cold front. You are looking for an airmass change to one cooler and drier, perhaps with an origin in Canada.

If a tsunami hits the west coast of america in winter , would it effect moisture in the air for the entire county and produce another snowstorm like "jonas"?

Asked by Zac over 1 year ago

Hi, Zac. No you would need to convert that water to vapor to move it across the country.

Would it be possible to have 3 complete days of darkness in the Middle East? Unlike the very mortgage be very south areas where you can have full brightness 24 hours

Asked by Kyle over 1 year ago

Not sure I understand the question, Kyle.

Why will it snow at 27° for hours, and then while it is still 27° change to sleet/snow mix

Asked by Krissy over 1 year ago

Excellent question, Krissy. Snow occurs when the temperature is below 32 from the surface of the earth to as high as 10,000 feet. Sleet occurs when a warm layer of air develops in between the ground and the formation zone so the snowflake melts and refreezes in the cold layer next to the ground.

I have a picture that I took today (02-26-16) at 7:34 am.
It was a cloud that look like a funnel cloud.

Asked by randy lapan over 1 year ago

Cool, love to see it. Do you have a link?

It has just hailed but there is no storm in sight. It isn't even raining. How is this possible?

Asked by Irisj about 1 year ago

I'd need a little bit more information, including location and time. That said, if you think it was not hail there is something called "graupel".

When I was a kid I'm almost certain I seen lightning tumble on ground like a tumbleweed. Internet says this is a myth and lie. But I'm certain what I saw. Is this possible? Is there any turth to it and is there even any real studies about it?

Asked by Curious weather man about 1 year ago

I would say you are NOT crazy! Best guess on what you saw is "ball lightning". Here is some material for you:

Are tornados easily predicted these days with advanced weather radar or do you still rely heavily on spotters on the ground? Is there hope for one day knowing when a tornado is going to strike (any new advancement in tech)?

Asked by Curious weather man about 1 year ago

Pretty easily detected in thunderstorms with Doppler radar. You are correct, we still use spotters heavily. Radar usually sees rotation above ground in the storm. Since the earth is round it curves away from the radar beam which is why the spotters are so critical providing "ground truth". Warning times have increased over the years and will continue, especially with new radar technology coming over the next few years.

How many people typically work in the weather room of tv station? What are there jobs? For example I'm sure they all don't stare at temperature gauges. Is there much of a difference between big city and tiny town stations, other than money--accuracy?

Asked by Curious weather man about 1 year ago

Most stations have a minimum of 3 weather folks to cover the entire week, morning, evening and weekends. The larger the city and the greater number of newscasts allows for more staff. Few stations have more than 6 people. A few large cities have a some off-air positions that are producers who manage the TV graphics and other functions.

Is it possible to go a whole summer without a serve thunderstorm? I'm not talking about in a desert but a normal city or town that has lots of rain though out the year.

Asked by Curious weather man about 1 year ago

Certainly possible but less likely in some regions of the country. Severe weather is more likely through the southern and central plains and the southeast. A storm is considered severe if it produces hail to one inch and/or 58 mph winds.

Where in Canada has the least varied barometric pressure .

Asked by fendog59 about 1 year ago

Interesting question. You might try here:

Why is it critical that all levels bliw in the same direction to form a tropical storm? Nd what happens when u have lowwe winds blowing a different than upper winds

Asked by Patricia over 1 year ago

If the wind changes direction with height it creates more friction, drag and chaos that impedes the development of the storm. Great question!

What is it about San Antonio that causes beautiful weather (rain producing systems) to approach the west side of the city, break apart producing little to no rain, and then come together on the East, producing large amounts of rain?

Asked by Kittykeim over 1 year ago

Well...interesting question. I'm going to say mostly perception since any number of folks have said the same thing about their town. I suppose you would have to go back and plot historical rainfall data to see if there really was a "hole" in coverage over the city. Cool question, thanks!

What causes a severe thunderstorm to roar like a jet plane hovering overhead... even after the worst of it has passed through.

Asked by ShannyM about 1 year ago

Great question. Lightning creates thunder and the sound will travel, sometimes about 15 miles. So you will hear the rumble as the storm continues away from your location. A single bolt can travel a long way so your are hearing the thunder as it reaches you from each point along the bolt.

I live in southern Missouri on a south facing ridge and have lived here since 2006. It seems that this year, beginning in February and continuing thru today(4/10/16) the strong winds have been relentless Why is that? Thank you.

Asked by Anne about 1 year ago

The general storm pattern favors that this year, Anne. Air flows clockwise and toward the center of a low pressures area, so storms to your west, which some have been, produce a south wind.

I have a burning question which is really bothering me. In Rhode Island, sunset times are usually earlier than in Fort Myers, Florida because of the rotation of the earth and the light from the sun. But, sunset times are showing almost the same. Why?

Asked by Guido about 1 year ago

Hmmm...not really my area of expertise. I'd say distance into the time zone and latitude/curvature of the earth must. Thx

On 10/19/2014 It rained hard at my house. NOAA and Weather Underground History reports show very little rain in my area. Why would that be?

Asked by Andrew about 1 year ago

My guess is that you were under some type of "convective" event like a thunderstorm and the rain gauges that the reports came from were not under that event. With some thunderstorms the distances in between no rain and heavy rain can be quite small. Thanks!

I recently saw two videos of tornadoes standing still for multiple minutes before moving and stopping again. I want to know how this happens? What makes a tornado stop in its tracks?

Asked by Emily Mildred Morris 11 months ago

Great question, Emily. Tornadoes are a part of the parent thunderstorm that moves and develops with the environmental winds and available moisture. The ones you saw were likely in an area of weak steering currents. Thanks

Can large amouts of snow create deep holes or ravines where people can fall through?

Asked by Raf 12 months ago

Not quite sure I understand the question. Certainly the weight of a large amount of snow can cause problems, as can the runoff as the snow melts.

How do I get my answer

Asked by Kandy 11 months ago

I would check with your local TV station or National Weather Service office.

I love photographing lightning. It's my big Hobby. This storm was insane. Lightning never stopped, & never made a sound. Here's a link to my YouTube video of it. Can you explain to me why this was?

Asked by Victoria 12 months ago

Great video, very active storm. Thunder travels only about 15 miles on average so these storms were too far away to hear anything. Great stuff!

For "Average number of days with precipitation" (, the annual average in Vienna is 43.4 days. Yet "Average number of rainy days" is 193 annually. If precipitation is rain/snow/etc., how can the rainy days be a (much) higher number?

Asked by Duke 12 months ago

Have to say I'm not familiar with that site. There is a feedback tab on the left, you might check with them.

If average barometric pressure at 10,000 feet is about 20.6 inches, why Is reported pressure today in Breckenridge CO 30.4 inches?

Asked by Bill 11 months ago

I would question that average as an error or typo. Standard pressure is 29.92.

1Why is air important for all living things?

2.How did you become interested in the weather?

3.How can we help bring back the ozone layer?

4. How long have you been a meteorologist?

5. How does a weather radar work?

6. What cause

Asked by Kendall about 1 year ago

Wow, lots of questions. 1. For animals, air has oxygen, which we need to breathe. 2. Have always been fascinated by the sky and clouds. 3. Not an expert here but I believe that the ozone layer needs to self-heal. 4. About 25 years. 5. Radar shoots a pulse of microwave energy then listens for some of the energy to be reflected back by precipitation. Thanks!

In a powerful thunderstorm the hell that comes from the clouds how can it hold Hale in the sky the size of softballs without following

Asked by Bruce Jacobs 11 months ago

Thunderstorms are made largely of rising air and the upward speed of the wind can reach over 70 mph, lifting the hailstones.

If you were to move to a new city, what weather-related datapoints would matter to you?

Asked by Steven 10 months ago

Hi Steven-If I understand the question you might try Click on the map for the region you are interested in. Each NWS office will have a link to local climate on the left nav bar. Weather Underground has good information for cities, or do a Google search for (city) climatology. Thanks!

What is the process you go through in order to keep individuals updated on the weather?

Asked by Lynn 9 months ago

We use the weather forecast models and the other tools mentioned in your other question to generate a forecast and then use television, radio and social media to share information.

Hey Kevin! Another q for you. How do you read the Climate Predictior Cntr Global Tropics Hazards and Benefits Outlook Chart? Does each week showcase the full tropical storm path? IE Is the Sept 14-20 show whats occuring in a 6 day period? TY!

Asked by Missy 10 months ago

Have to admit, I've not seen this product! Thanks. Yes, it looks like that would cover the movement through that period and is good news for you!

Hey Kevin! A selfish question here, but getting married in Wilmington NC on September 17th. Think we'll see any more tropical storm/hurricane activity within the next 10-12 days on the Atlantic?

Asked by Missy 10 months ago

Hi Missy-

Congratulations! A little too early to say at this point but odds seem in your favor. Keep track here:

When I see a meteorologist put their hand over the screen and draw a line or a drop down menu comes up and they "click" it are they the ones controlling that or is there somebody behind a computer clicking the buttons.

Asked by Bryce 9 months ago

Great question, Bryce. There are different ways of doing it with different systems. Most likely it is being controlled by the meteorologist via the weather system and the camera. It knows how to follow a finger and draw a line or move icons around the screen. If they were in front of a television monitor there are different systems that track the finger directly on the screen.

My son and I are wondering if the amount of oxygen in the air we breathe changes when it rains. For example, his principal believes that oxygen levels increase when it rains. Some people think it decreases. We are not so sure it changes at all.

Asked by Serenisticks 8 months ago

Interesting question. I must admit atmospheric composition beyond the basics is a little out of my area. There is some evidence to suggest that lightning increases nitrogen. Thanks!

What equipment is used to detect natural disasters and or phenomenon?

Asked by Lynn 9 months ago

For weather the primary tools are satellites, radar and computer forecast models that use weather balloon data and many types of other sensors.

I go for bike rides alot. I noticed though that December/January is always cloudy/rainy, like 5 of 7 days, it get's really old, there's no sun! Why is this?

Asked by exposcandal 5 months ago

The weather is dictated by large shifting atmospheric waves that move around the planet. Your area is in a spot that favors storm development right now. Bundle up!

Is it possible that with so many people stuck on the highway trying to evacutat the hurricanes that was enough to change the air temp and so the hurricane's path?

Asked by Natalie 9 months ago

Interesting thought, Natalie. Hurricanes are driven by atmospheric patterns that cover hundreds of miles. Since even several highways are small in comparison not enough heat would be generated. Fun question. Thanks.

We tried measuring the amount of rain using many different sized containers. We brought our containers inside and measured the rain using a measuring cup and everyone collected a different amount of rain! Any tips for an accurate way to measure rain?

Asked by Mrs. Dumond's Class 7 months ago

I think I would do a search for rain gauge and buy one. It needs to be calibrated for the opening and bucket size. Have fun!

What makes the wind strong

Asked by Sam 6 months ago

The pressure gradient between high and low.

I have a question about Snowfall in Cincinnati Ohio next week, I was wondering approx. how many inches of Snow/Sleet will the Tri-State/ County receive.

Asked by Darrien 7 months ago

Hi, Darrien. I'm in Texas and don't really follow specific forecasts in Ohio. You might try one of your local television station websites or

why was 2016 such a hot year and what are the possible effects from the heat? Will we experience temperature increases in2017 also? Are there future issues we need to be worried about due to these spikes in temperatures in the South East?

Asked by Jenna 6 months ago

Hi Jenna. Great question and one with a big answer. Probably a little too big for the scope of this website. May I recommend NOAA's Climate Prediction Center. There is a ton of good information there.

We were having trouble deciding if todays clouds were stratus or cirrus in Ore City, Texas. We have pictures if you can help.

Asked by 4thgrade 5 months ago

Tough to say without seeing the pictures. If you would like to post them somewhere with a link I'd be happy to look. You could also do a Google search for "cloud classification" and see if something looks familiar.

Here in Lake County, Illinois (Zion) we have had nothing that resembles winter. No snow. No slick roads. No dangerous windchill conditions. Most daytime temperatures are above freezing. Next to nothing for rain. What is going on here?

Asked by Clarence 5 months ago

I usually answer this questions like this. I really don't like the use of the word "normal" in weather. "Average" is better. Over simplified, if the "normal temperature for this date is 75 degrees and we look a the records for the last 100 years. In theory half of those years the temperature could have been 50 degrees and half 100 degrees. The "normal" is 75 but it was never 75. So, there are swings in the global weather patterns constantly you're at one end of the swing! Hope that makes sense.

What is a monsoon regime? What are the causes of monsoon regime?

Asked by Boom Step Panot 6 months ago

A seasonal weather pattern across the area Indian Ocean area caused by the changing of the seasons.

my name is Wyatt in i was just wondering if you could get a meteorology job with any thing below a bachelor's degree like a certificate in college?

Asked by wyatt 3 months ago

Hi, Wyatt. It is possible if you can demonstrate a good knowledge of the subject but competition is pretty stiff for jobs so every bit of education helps. Good luck!

I live in a country town called Yea in Victoria, Australia. It's a saying in town that if Lake Eildon's water is lower more fog will set over town. Eildon is huge lake about 50 km away which flows into river tributaries near us. Is this explainable?

Asked by Elizabeth about 1 month ago

Very interesting question, Elizabeth. Since I'm not familiar with the area I'll take a guess after looking at the lake on Wikipedia. Fog is created when water vapor cools, so the lake as a moisture source is likely a factor, but difficult to say that the lake level had an effect. I did notice at the end of the Wikipedia article that the area had suffered drought conditions in much of the 2000s which would obviously lower the lake. Also noticed from the picture that it looks like a hilly area. Cool air is heavier and therefore sinks into valley where fog often will form. So my best guess would be that you were in a longer-term dry weather pattern that meant the lake was lower, and might have even been a little cooler. Sure looks pretty! Thanks!

hey is this a real person

Asked by Mike about 1 month ago

Yes. But some would disagree.

Hello why does thunderstorms happen when the forecast doesn't say thunderstorms.?

Asked by Kim 9 days ago

Hello, Kim. The forecast starts with weather balloons taking measurements of the atmosphere, but only a small portion, and only twice a day. Since the network of balloons is small there are usually things that go unseen and some of those things can help develop storms

what does a person have to do to become a meteorologist?

Asked by randall 19 days ago

Hi, Randall. There are a number of colleges that offer degrees in meteorology. It would be helpful to know what you are more interested in since schools lean differently. Research, operational forecasting, broadcasting and private consulting are all options. I highly recommend internships so you can get a feel for each area. Good luck!

Me and my co worker are in disagreement about what time is the hottest time of the day. I say between 2 and 3 and he says 4 and 5. What's the correct answer.

Asked by Mikael 4 days ago

Both! Earlier in the winter and later in the summer since daylight is longer. What do I win?

About two weeks ago I witnessed what I believe to be a waterspout on a relatively small lake near my home in sw Wisconsin. It appeared out of ominous clouds that were bringing in a pretty severe storm. Do waterspouts happen on inland lakes?

Asked by Jeff Lawver 3 days ago

Yup! Any body of water. Glad you got to see one!