BBC weather blooper by Michael Fish storm of 1987 - YouTube A forecast is now available whenever you want and information about up and coming storms can be accessed in seconds.”, Which means we’re more prepared, as are the authorities. FEATURES & STORIES Great Storm: Michael's forecast. D.Sc. Did you know? The storm was in fact well forecast earlier in the week but later computer forecasts tended to back off and changed the emphasis from wind to rain as it had been so wet up till then and many places were close to flooding. Thirty years on, Michael Fish seems to have reconciled himself with the negative publicity he received over the forecast that never really was, but he’ll doubtless be the name on everyone’s lips this weekend. Scientists say today's machines would have picked up indications of the storm heading south, and that it would have been given a yellow or amber warning rather than red, indicating the most severe. There's only one problem - that wasn't what happened. Find out more, and listen to the true story about 1987, in Michael's own words here. Start your Independent Premium subscription today. Michael Fish's weather forecast of 15 October is possibly the most famous prediction ever broadcast. Want an ad-free experience?Subscribe to Independent Premium. The existing Open Comments threads will continue to exist for those who do not subscribe to Independent Premium. "You can never say no in the weather business" he said. Arts and Culture Film and TV Michael Fish would not have got 1987 storm spot-on, even with supercomputer Modern forecasting technology would have seen the Great Storm of 1987 … It was the most devastating storm to hit the UK in 300 years, claiming 18 lives, destroying 15 million trees and leading many people to wonder whether they could ever trust a weather forecast again “A typical smartphone of today has a least five times more computer power than our supercomputer of 1987 that could perform four million calculations per second. Well, if you're watching, don't worry, there isn't!". Are you sure you want to mark this comment as inappropriate? Met Office meteorologist and presenter Alex Deakin says: “In 1987 people received their forecasts either via newspapers or at fixed times on TV and radio. I drove to Television Centre from my west London home via Chiswick at about 4.30am. Michael Fish made a bit of a blunder in 1987 (Image: BBC) Always cheery, he told viewers: “Earlier on today, apparently, a woman rang the BBC and said she heard there was a hurricane on the way…well, don’t worry, there isn’t.” It was an embarrassment for Mr Fish, whose name became synonymous with wrong predictions. Now over 90 per cent of adults consult forecasts via social media, websites or mobile apps. Photograph: Georges Dekeerle/Getty Images. Looking back 30 years to what we now call 'The Great Storm', and the thing that sticks in most peoples minds isn't the loss of life and damage to trees and property, but a 'lady from Wales who asked if there is going to be a hurricane'. Michael Fish has said no one was to blame for failing to predict the Great Storm of 1987 and warned that the error could happen again. By Tom Rowley 14 October 2012 • 23:58 pm Ask people about the Great Storm which ravaged the south of England in 1987 and most will remember "that" forecast by weatherman Michael Fish, or … When the Met Office revisited the event with modern weather forecasting technology, the weather system could be seen approaching a few days in advance. The roof of Holter's Mill in Canterbury sustained great damage and was torn away by the wind. The Met instituted improvements including the “observational coverage of the atmosphere over the ocean to the south and west of the UK... from ships, aircraft, buoys and satellites” and brushing up its computer systems. Holter's Mill damaged in the great storm of 1987. The worst storm in nearly 300 years hit UK shores on this night in 1987 after weatherman Michael Fish had apparently denied there was a hurricane on its way. As far as it goes, Fish wasn’t wrong. Due to the sheer scale of this comment community, we are not able to give each post the same level of attention, but we have preserved this area in the interests of open debate. "The damage was in large part due to a phenomenon called a sting jet that was only identified by analysis," he explained. The highest gust recorded over the UK was 115mph at Shoreham on the Sussex coast at 3.10am. Veteran weatherman Michael Fish … And an epitaph to a bygone age of weather forecasting it will remain, because three decades on from the Great Storm, the Met Office has rather stuck its neck out to say it is unlikely to be caught out on the hop in the same way again. In any case, what exactly was the Great Storm? The Great Storm In October 1987 Kent was hit by one of the strongest storms in history. There are not many people who were able to take something positive from the October 1987 storm, but Claire Sayer is still feeling the benefit. The Great Storm of 1987: Could Britain be taken by surprise again, Michael Fish? He says the 1987 storm was so damaging because it struck when the trees still had many of their leaves. The presenter - who has gone on to have a long and successful career - has previously defended his mistake, telling the BBC that forecasting remains unpredictable even with access to new technologies. It killed 22 people as it ravaged the UK, 30 years ago. Michael is of course well known for the 1987 'Hurricane', but the true story is a little different to the one you may have heard. He says the 1987 storm was so damaging because it struck when the trees still had many of their leaves. And there’s also the way we get our information. Michael is 75 … Nearly 35 years later, he remains Britain's most well-known and well-loved weather forecaster. And in case you were wondering why the Great Storm of 1987 didn’t have a name, as storms do today, that’s a new development, being first introduced in 2015. Create a commenting name to join the debate, There are no Independent Premium comments yet - be the first to add your thoughts, There are no comments yet - be the first to add your thoughts. Fish’s forecast is logged in history. In the South-east, where the greatest damage occurred, gusts of 80mph were recorded for three to four consecutive hours. On the eve of storm… In a lunchtime broadcast on 15 October 1987, weather forecaster Michael Fish made a prediction that would come to define his career. The Great Storm of 1987 weather map Picture: Peter Milford. Says the Met: “The three-tier National Severe Weather Warning Service was in introduced following the investigation into the storm and now informs Government, civil contingency stakeholders, emergency responders and the public of the risks of severe weather.”. Please be respectful when making a comment and adhere to our Community Guidelines. Please continue to respect all commenters and create constructive debates. Michael Fish 1987 Storm Stock Photos and Images (28) Narrow your search: Black & white. The Great Storm of 1987 was a violent extratropical cyclone that occurred on the night of 15–16 October, with hurricane-force winds causing casualties in the United Kingdom, France and the Channel Islands as a severe depression in the Bay of Biscay moved northeast. Thirty years have passed since the storm but even … Our journalists will try to respond by joining the threads when they can to create a true meeting of independent Premium. "Earlier on today apparently, a woman rang the BBC and said she'd heard there was a hurricane on the way," he confidently told viewers. But what the Great Storm did was also blow in a sea change in the way we not only forecast weather and track storms, but also how warnings are given out. Following the storm few dealers made it to their desks and stock market trading was suspended twice and the market closed early at 12.30pm. City traders and investors spent the weekend, 17–18 October, repairing damaged gardens in between trying to guess market react… Sunday night marks exactly 30 years since the Great Storm of 1987 and Mr Fish's error. It allows our most engaged readers to debate the big issues, share their own experiences, discuss real-world solutions, and more. For 24 years veteran weatherman Michael Fish has borne the brunt for famously telling the nation there was no hurricane in the offing, just hours before the Great Storm of 1987. Screenshots Technical Specs . All about Michael Fish. Analysis of records of the hourly mean wind speeds and highest gusts indicates that such extreme conditions over land in south and south-east England were likely to occur, on average, only once in 200 years. It began life as a “kink” in a cold front off the Bay of Biscay, marking the boundary between warm air from Africa and colder air originating in the Arctic region. Great Storm: Firefighter's story. It was an embarrassment for Mr Fish, whose name became synonymous with wrong predictions. But that’s splitting hairs, perhaps, and those who were subjected to the storm – which claimed 22 lives – would not have been arguing the definition. The former meteorologist received a wealth of criticism in the wake of the storm, for failing to predict it. Photograph: Georges Dekeerle/Getty Images. “Supercomputing capability has also hugely advanced since 1987,” says the Met Office. Are you sure you want to delete this comment? David Barnett tries to read the runes, Find your bookmarks in your Independent Premium section, under my profile. In the same broadcast, he has said, he warned Brits to “batten down the hatches, there’s some very windy weather on the way.”. “Earlier on today, apparently”, Fish informed the nation on 15 October, 1987, “a woman rang the BBC and said she heard there was a hurricane on the way – well, if you're watching, don't worry, there isn’t!”. But never let the facts get in the way of a television legend – Fish is resigned to the fact that that’s how he’ll always be remembered. "We didn't know about it then - and we only know about it now, in part, from looking at the 1987 storm," Mr England said. A disaster and a tragedy, for sure. "Well, if you're watching, don't worry, there isn't.". The storm that lashed Britain later that evening, while certainly flexing its muscles with hurricane-strength winds, was an extratropical cyclone. You can also choose to be emailed when someone replies to your comment. Michael Fish got the storm of 1987 wrong - but modern supercomputers may have missed it too, Michael Fish said no hurricane was on the way, hours before the worst storm in more than 300 years, The storm caused destruction across the UK. A rare and violent weather event, a sting jet involves high-velocity, high-altitude winds being brought down to the surface of the earth. 'Hurricane Fish' still wouldn't have been predicted today, Tropical storm Nate barrels toward hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast, Five things we learned from Manchester United's win over CSKA Moscow, Greenpeace storms massive ship delivering Volkswagen diesels to UK, Hurricane Maria makes landfall on Puerto Rico, You may not agree with our views, or other users’, but please respond to them respectfully, Swearing, personal abuse, racism, sexism, homophobia and other discriminatory or inciteful language is not acceptable, Do not impersonate other users or reveal private information about third parties, We reserve the right to delete inappropriate posts and ban offending users without notification. It killed 22 people as it ravaged the UK, 30 years ago. Read our full mailing list consent terms here. Michael Fish's weather forecast of 15 October is possibly the most famous prediction ever broadcast. 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