Straight Talk: Next Week's Storm

Chief Meteorologist Shane Smith shares his thoughts about next week's storm potential, and the storm surrounding the storm on social media.

 We live in a world where everyone has a microphone now.  Everyone's voice can be heard through social media, YouTube, and the internet.  If you have an opinion, an idea, a thought or creation to share, you can do it!  And you know what, that is awesome.  It's incredible the content that people can create and share with the world and the conversations and growth that can take place from that.

But this is also a double edge sword.  We live in a world where anyone can share any information they want, with no context, no expertise, and no value.  It becomes hard to discern the voices in a room full of shouting people, and figure out who you can trust and who you can believe.  

I'm not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, and I'm not a perfect weather forecaster.  I will be the first to admit when I make a mistake or botch a forecast.  It also bugs me to end, not because I got it wrong, but because I provided incorrect information to folks depending on that information.  I try my best, and sometimes it's not enough, but I always redouble my efforts and try to bring you the best forecast possible.

With that being said there are people out there who will bring you information just to get your attention, or just to cause a little chaos.  They will post single runs of a weather computer model, and use that to say, "A HUGE SNOWSTORM IS COMING."  Something like that happened yesterday.  I don't know who did it, or why they did it, but they posted a single run of the European Forecast Model that had ridiculous snowfall totals for most of Kentucky.  

I've lost count over the last two days of the amount of people that have asked me, "Shane are we really getting a foot of snow next week?"  or something along those lines.  I can't say with certainty no, but the chances are highly unlikely.  That was just one run, of one model, and it's now showing something completely different.  This storm is very complex, and the devil will be in the details of how it tracks and how strong it is, to determine how much and what type of precipitation we will see. 

Historically storms like this one tend to go west of the Appalachian Mountains and then head to the great lakes. They usually bring rain and then light snow accumulation as cold air wraps in behind the storm.  While I can't say for sure this will happen, this does appear to be the most likely scenario AT THIS POINT.  

We are still several days away from this storm, and also have to deal with another one over the weekend.  That one looks like it will bring us some rain, and maybe a light snow accumulation Sunday Night into Monday morning.  And guess what, it's still too early to get into too much detail with that one as well!  So the bottom line is this folks... be careful where you get your information from.  I hope that with my transparency and my openness that you'll trust me and the rest of the WYMT Sky Alert Team for your forecast info.

-Shane Smith

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