Fake Weather Forecasts are a Growing Concern

Bismarck - In the weather world ---meteorologists are fighting against a growing problem of fake weather forecasts. 

And Meteorologist Heidi Werosta explains how you can spot one and stay away from them.

In this business everybody claims to be an expert because the weather is a part of your everyday lives, including coming across on all platforms of social media and some of it is a fake forecast. 

John Paul Martin, National Weather Service, says, "Someone can take one map from one model 10 days out that might show gloom and doom right, and then post that to the social media site."

Amber Wheeler, KX Meteorologist, says, "If a forecast is given to you more than a few days out and you're scared, take it as fake news or a fake weather forecast."

Here is a model run from November 13th that was valid for Black Friday, a 9 day forecast,  it has a few inches of snow.
Now for the next days model run, the 14th, it has a completely different forecast.

As time inched closer to the date, the forecast that verified was actually 56 degrees and sunny skies in Bismarck.

In addition to model runs, posts or articles and pictures are also a real problem.

Wheeler says, "Planes in the water with Hurricane Harvey and you see a lot of fake photos from big events because people are trying to get likes."

These generally aren't real or up to date. 

According to US Code, whoever knowingly publishes a weather forecast that is wrong and uses the government logo is fined and sometimes even imprisoned because it is highly illegal.

Here is a false track of Hurricane Harvey that has an extended forecast and does in fact use the NOAA seal.

Martin says, "Those seals are all copyrighted and so the use of those would be illegal without the approval of the National Weather Service of NOAA."

"Find that trusted source that you know time and time again and has had your back," adds Wheeler.

And when you see that questionable post on social media, always go back to your reliable source.

Heidi reminds us that any forecasting more than 5 days out is subject to change.


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