The Central Weather Bureau (CWB) came under fire yesterday for its lack of accuracy in forecasts about Tropical Storm Kalmaegi, especially regarding the intensity of the rains.
Even President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) expressed dissatisfaction with the bureau, asking it yesterday to conduct a review and work to improve its weather reports.
In Taichung City’s Mayuan (麻園), creeks and rivers overflowed, causing many main roads to flood. Taichung Mayor Jason Hu (胡志強) expressed shock over the extent of the flooding in the city.
PHOTO: CHAN CHAO-YANG, TAIPEI TIMES
Director of the CWB’s weather forecast center Daniel Wu (吳德榮) said yesterday that the bureau had warned two days prior that there would be heavy rains in central and southern regions.
Air currents to the west and south usually occur after a tropical storm, but in Kalmaegi’s case, the currents occurred almost simultaneously with the tropical storm, he said.
“Therefore, the storm was extremely difficult to forecast,” Wu said.
The CWB said later yesterday that an aircraft carrying weather reconnaissance equipment had been dispatched to collect information on the outer structure of the storm as it approached.
However, it still could not obtain detailed information on the intensity and changes in the typhoon’s center, the bureau said.
The National Science Council has been supporting a project called the “Dropwindsonde Observation for Typhoon Surveillance near the Taiwan Region” (DOTSTAR), in which aircraft are sent close to the center of approaching typhoons to collect data on rain and wind conditions.
However, this was not enough, a bureau official said.
“The weather service in the US is able to dispatch a flight every six hours to continually observe changes in storms’ structures,” Wu said.
“However, DOTSTAR will only [dispatch a flight] once a typhoon comes close,” the CWB director said.
The bureau’s deputy director Shin Tzay-chyn (辛在勤) said the bureau would work with DOTSTAR scientists to expand the scale of the project.
DOING ENOUGH? The HPA budgets NT$1.3 billion to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but has no separate budget to fight teen drinking, a doctor said The government should step up alcohol education and prevention efforts, and allocate more of the budget to it, doctors said on Friday, citing the high consumption of alcohol among Taiwanese adolescents. One out of four 12-to-17-year-olds has consumed alcohol, said Yen Tsung-hai (顏宗海), director of Linkou Chang Gung Memorial Hospital’s Department of Clinical Toxicology. The Health Promotion Administration (HPA) budgets NT$1.3 billion (US$43.9 million) annually to prevent the health hazards of tobacco, but it has not allocated a separate budget for preventing teenage drinking or excessive alcohol use, Yen said. “There is no so-called ‘safe drinking level’ for minors,” because any amount consumed
The Fancy Frontier manga and anime expo held in Taipei over the weekend has sparked controversy, after a participant allegedly contravened the Act on Offenses Against Sexual Morality (妨害風化罪) by publicly exposing her private parts during a photo shoot. The two-day event opened at the Expo Dome at the Taipei Expo Park on Saturday, attracting numerous comic and anime creators, cosplayers, photographers and fans. Allegedly, a female cosplayer who was not wearing any underwear lifted up her skirt and revealed her private parts at an outdoor photography area near the venue. Event organizers said yesterday that to prevent indecent exposure, they have since
DREAMING OF TRAVEL: About 7,000 people applied for the experience, with about 60 chosen for the first flight yesterday, which includes boarding an airplane Starved of the travel experience during COVID-19? Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) has the solution — a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security, and even board the aircraft. You just never leave. The airport yesterday began offering travelers the chance to do just that, with about 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere. About 7,000 people applied to take part, with the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences are to take place in the coming weeks. “I really want to leave the country, but because of the pandemic, lots of flights cannot fly,”
SOUTH WINDS: Taiwan’s southeastern region, as well as central and southern regions, would see regional showers and thundershowers, the Central Weather Bureau said Heavy to extremely heavy rainfall in the afternoon in the next two days might cause damage in affected areas, the Central Weather Bureau (CWB) said yesterday, urging people to stay vigilant. With the weakening of a Pacific high-pressure system and with a frontal system in the north moving south, the nation would come under the influence of southwest and south winds today, the bureau said. People in the nation’s southeastern region, as well as in central and southern Taiwan, are likely to experience regional showers or thundershowers, it said. Chances of afternoon thundershowers are high nationwide, and people in some regions