Saturday, January 24, 2009

Broadcast News: Massive TV Job Cuts; Weather Unaffected?

The current economic climate has had a strong negative effect on advertising. This is sending a chill wind through the broadcast industry, but recent cuts seem to have left weather reporting relatively unaffected.

The dcrtv blog reported yesterday that massive job cuts were announced in the news department of Washington's local ABC affiliate, WJLA, Channel 7, and its sister operation, cable News Channel 8. The 26 cuts, mainly in the back office, include several on-air personalities, but no meteorologists have been listed.

Allbritton Communications, which owns the Washington stations, also is reported to have made cuts at its stations in Little Rock (KATV), Birmingham (WBMA), Harrisburg (WHTM), Charleston (WCIV), and Tulsa (KTUL). A TV photography forum post from Birmingham indicates that 2 positions in weather were cut.

Albritton's bond rating was cut by Standard & Poor's back in October to "B", considered "Highly Speculative."

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Inauguration Day Weather, 2009


2013 Update: See Inauguration Weather 2013 Update for more recent data.

Jan. 23 Update: Added January daily chart and link to hourly observations for Jan. 20.

January 20 temperatures
High: 30
Low: 19
Departure from average: -9

Precipitation: 0

Noon conditions
Temperature: 28
Wind: NNW at 13 mph, gusting to 23 mph
Sky: Few clouds at 4500 ft, Overcast at 25000 ft. 

Complete hourly weather observations from the National Weather Service are here.

Click here for previous Inauguration Weather posts.

Image (click to enlarge):
CapitalClimate chart of January 2009 observed daily temperatures from NWS data, background image © Kevin Ambrose

Monday, January 19, 2009

Inauguration Weather: PM Update

The occasional snow has now moved out of the Washington area, which received only a minimal accumulation. Total precipitation at the major reporting locations was 0.01" at Dulles and BWI, with only a trace at National Airport. Baltimore Inner Harbor reported a whopping 0.03". Snowfall amounts were a bit higher to the north and west, with some reports of 1-2" in central and northern Maryland.

The outlook for Inauguration Day continues to be cold and dry, with a brisk northwesterly breeze. A few snow flurries are possible (20% chance) in the afternoon. After a morning low in the lower 20s, temperatures will struggle to reach the freezing mark later in the day.

Some snowfall amounts reported by the National Weather Service as of 4 pm:

LOCATION STORM TOTAL TIME/DATE COMMENTS
SNOWFALL OF
(INCHES) MEASUREMENT

MARYLAND

...ALLEGANY COUNTY...
FROSTBURG 4.0 244 PM 1/19 SPOTTER

...BALTIMORE COUNTY...
HUNT VALLEY 2.0 230 PM 1/19 WBAL-TV MEDIA
JACKSONVILLE 1.5 230 PM 1/19 USDA METEOROLOGIST
OWINGS MILLS 1.3 200 PM 1/19 SPOTTER
REISTERSTOWN 1.0 125 PM 1/19 SPOTTER
TOWSON 1.0 1220 PM 1/19 EMGNCY MNGMT

...CARROLL COUNTY...
WESTMINISTER 1.3 255 PM 1/19 SPOTTER
SYKESVILLE 1.2 145 PM 1/19 NOAA/NESDIS EMPLOYEE
WESTMINSTER 1N 0.9 106 PM 1/19 CO-OP

...HARFORD COUNTY...
JOPPA 1.5 200 PM 1/19 SPOTTER

...HOWARD COUNTY...
ELLICOTT CITY 1.5 330 PM 1/19 MEDIA RPT
COLUMBIA 1.4 245 PM 1/19 SPOTTER

...MONTGOMERY COUNTY...
LAYTONSVILLE 1.5 315 PM 1/19 MEDIA RPT
MONTGOMERY VILLAGE 1.5 330 PM 1/19 NWS NCEP EMPLOYEE
OLNEY 1.5 158 PM 1/19 SPOTTER
BROOKVILLE 0.5 1255 PM 1/19 SPOTTER
GERMANTOWN 0.3 1125 AM 1/19 MAINLY GRASSY AREAS

VIRGINIA

...CITY OF HARRISONBURG...
HARRISONBURG 1.0 1128 AM 1/19 WSVA RADIO STN

...CITY OF MANASSAS...
MANASSAS 0.5 235 PM 1/19 SPOTTER

...CITY OF WINCHESTER...
WINCHESTER 1.5 350 PM 1/19
WINCHESTER 0.5 1115 AM 1/19 NWS EMPLOYEE
WINCHESTER 0.4 1156 AM 1/19 SPOTTER-ROADS COVERED

...FAIRFAX COUNTY...
HERNDON 0.3 115 PM 1/19 NWS EMPLOYEE
RESTON T 220 PM 1/19 SPOTTER

...FREDERICK COUNTY...
GRAVEL SPRINGS 2.5 312 PM 1/19 NWS EMPLOYEE
STEPHENS CITY 2E 2.0 130 PM 1/19 SPOTTER
MIDDLETOWN 0.7 1205 PM 1/19 SPOTTER
CROSS JUNCTION 0.5 953 AM 1/19 SPOTTER

...LOUDOUN COUNTY...
STERLING NWS/WFO 1.0 1245 PM 1/19
STERLING 0.3 1225 PM 1/19

...RAPPAHANNOCK COUNTY...
SPERRYVILLE 1.5 1111 AM 1/19 SPOTTER-EST 1/4 MI VSBY

Inauguration Weather Update: Light Snow Develops

Noon update: BWI with 0.01" is the only one of the three major airports in the region to report measurable precipitation so far.

Original post:
Twenty-four hours before the Presidential Inauguration, intermittent light snow, punctuated with breaks of sunshine, has developed over portions of the Washington metro area. While nowhere near the magnitude of the Taft Inauguration storm of 100 years ago, the expected snowfall of up to an inch could lend a wintry appearance to pre-Inaugural activities.

Temperatures will reach the mid 30s this afternoon, but will fall tonight to the mid 20s on northwesterly winds. On Inauguration Day, winds gusting up to 25 mph will make the temperatures in the high 20s to near 30° feel even colder.

Image: Washington, DC area radar shortly before noon today from The Weather Channel

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Inauguration Weather Forecast Update: Some Scattered Snow Showers Sunday

Temperatures have moderated significantly overnight, rising above freezing for the first time since Wednesday, when the high was 35°. Radar is showing light snow and mixed frozen precipitation over much of the Washington metro area, but surface reports indicate that little, if any, is reaching the ground.

The computer models have continued to disagree through this morning's runs, but the main storm development in the next couple of days is likely to be south and east of Washington. Some occasional light snow and/or sleet is still probable through Monday, with colder, but not extreme, temperatures returning by Inauguration Day.

Inauguration Day Outlook:
High 29-32
Low 20-22
Chance of precipitation: less than 20%

Image (click to enlarge):
CapitalClimate chart of January 2009 observed and forecast daily temperatures from NWS data, background image © Kevin Ambrose

Seasonal Outlook

Latest seasonal forecast: Click here.


Latest 3-month temperature outlook from Climate Prediction Center/NWS/NOAA.