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The Importance of Getting the Weather Facts Straight

Contributed by Steve Roberts, CCM, CompuWeather Sr. Forensic Meteorologist, Weather Expert and Certified Consulting Meteorologist

Many weather related cases and claims can be very complicated with vast amounts of weather data to sift through.  At a glance, weather data can be very misleading to an untrained professional without the knowledge to properly analyze and interpret the data.  Data from a nearby weather reporting site may indicate that the last winter storm was a week prior to a serious slip and fall accident, but at a closer look, the ice responsible for the fall formed from melting and refreezing that occurred during the time when the slip and fall occurred.  This makes what appears to be a long lasting pre-existing condition into an event in progress, creating a game changer for both sides of a legal matter.  In addition, weather data can reveal that a severe thunderstorm outbreak containing tornadoes and high winds occurred on a day when a tree toppled onto a pedestrian, causing serious injury.  After further inspection, an arborist determines that the tree had visible signs of rot, while a forensic meteorologist combs through the data and concludes that the severe weather outbreak did not affect the local area where the incident occurred.

Forensic meteorologists have access to many more forms of data than the average person, and at a much higher resolution.  Forensic meteorologists are also capable of interpreting the weather data through their extensive meteorological training and knowledge on the limitations of each data source that they rely upon.  In the medical field, most patients would be able to review an MRI of a body part and be able to make out the basic bone and tissue structures.  However, the doctor has the knowledge and expertise to pick up on the subtle signatures that make the difference between healing the patient and a potentially life threatening situation.  Similarly, in the field of meteorology, not having a trained weather expert review your case and the associated weather data could result in the life or death of a case or claim, which ultimately can result in a significant loss of revenue and a tarnished professional reputation.

CompuWeather offers a vast array of forensic weather products that can fit into most budgets. This makes it affordable to acquire the peace of mind that there will be no surprises when it comes to the weather portion of a case or claim.  After all, what is the true cost of not knowing?