HUDDERSFIELD weatherman Paul Stevens has criticised the Met Office for failing to give adequate warnings of yesterday’s heavy snow.
Salendine-Nook based Paul says that, based on previous warnings, Huddersfield and surrounding districts should have been on at least an amber alert.
He claims that yesterday’s snow – the heaviest since 2010 – was widely forecast and Huddersfield residents should have been put on alert.
Instead, the amber warning issued by the Met Office finished north of Leeds and although Huddersfield people were expecting some snow, they were not expecting the deluge which arrived.
According to Paul there was up to 10cms in the town centre, up to 15cms at 700ft and as much as 20cms to 25cms (10 inches) of snow on higher ground.
Met Office warnings are based on the level of confidence of the forecast and the impact on the population.
Paul said: “Last Friday the Met office issued a red alert for 20cms to 25cms of snow on the Brecon Beacons, where there are isolated farms and sheep.
“What was the point of issuing a red alert for a low population area when we have had the same amount of snow – which was widely forecast – in an area of high population?
“In the areas not covered by the amber alert you have a population in excess of 400,000. It makes you wonder how they could get it so wrong.
“If they had issued an amber warning, there would have been greater preparedness by local people and the local authority.
“Questions should be asked of the Met Office as to why we weren’t warned. As it was, people were waking up not realising how bad the snow was.”
Two days ago Paul gave a more accurate picture of the snow for Huddersfield, compared with the Met Office. Yesterday he said that he was “very happy” with his forecast.
He now says that there will be an end to the easterly winds from Siberia by the weekend, but not before some more snow.
“We will then see a return to wet and windy weather, with the possibility of some localised flooding,” he said.
Dan Williams, a spokesman for the Met Office, said: “There was a yellow warning out and it does talk about snow in excess of 10cm above 200m.
“I think in this case the yellow warning does cover it. Generally speaking, the amounts of snow were in line with what we forecast.
I don’t see what more we could have done”.