Doofus Of The Day #841

Today’s award goes to the German Weather Service.

The German Weather Service (DWD) issued a weather warning for North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) on Wednesday predicting 5 to 10 cm of snow and winds of up to 60 km/h.

“Due to snowfall of between 5 and 10 cm and wind speeds of up to 60 km/h snowdrifts will build up,” reads the email.

It also recommends that people avoid using their cars due to the fact that in places streets “will be impassable.”

The weather warning is for the first two days of July.

The contents of the email came as a surprise to residents of the west German state, which is currently enjoying blue skies and temperatures of up to 35 degrees Celsius [95 degrees Fahrenheit].

. . .

When the DWD were informed of the contents of the email the mystery was finally cleared up, reports the Rheinische Post.

A spokesperson said “We were testing a new warning system and unfortunately we sent a completely false report to subscribers.

“Naturally given the temperatures outside one need not worry about snow drifts.”

There’s more at the link.

Given that most of Europe is currently in the grip of a heat wave so extreme that it poses dangers to the elderly and those with breathing difficulties, I’d imagine many will actually be disappointed that no snow arrived!

On the other hand, at least the German Weather Service hasn’t come a cropper as badly as Britain’s Meteorological Office did back in 1987.  Michael Fish’s comments on the BBC weather forecast the previous evening became legendary.

“Don’t worry” turned into the so-called “Great Storm” of 1987.  It killed 13 people and caused massive damage all across England.  My favorite news story from the storm was of an ambulance that was struck by a passing yacht, drifting along on floodwaters!  However, I’m sure the ambulance crew didn’t find it as amusing as I did . . .



  1. Peter, If I recall correctly you served in the SA Army during the bush wars. From my recollection of that era's firearms you are very familiar with the FN-FAL.

    I ordered a FAL recently (DS Arms 21" Voyager). Obviously I need plenty of magazines and ammunition. Parts are a bit trickier as I do not know what parts these rifles tend to go through. Also since the supply of FAL stuff has gone from a flood to a trickle and I expect it to get worse I want to stash parts pretty deeply now as they might be very hard to get in ten or twenty years.

    So I would like to solicit your thoughts in spare parts. A full parts kit is in bound but I would like to pick up second (or third's) of the most likely to wear out/ break/ be lost parts.

    In your service with the FAL what parts did you see break, wear out or get lost?

    Thanks in advance,

  2. I flew into Heathrow the morning after that storm.
    Best comment came, of course, from the letters to The Times.
    Given the Meteorological Office's forecast it suggested the storm be named Æthelred.

  3. We were stationed in Grafenwehr in Bavaria in the early 1970's and one summer it got so hot the Germans were dying of heat stroke before they could reach the hospital (which was in the next town about 10 klicks away). The US Army Post (7th Army Training Center) Commander opened the post dispensary to the local civilians and ended up saving a number of lives. We live in Louisiana now and 95 degrees is nothing unusual but the first summer back was pure hell.

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