More sub-The Onion nonsense
The controversy over the alleged distortions of the ITV Wales weather forecast grew today with sponsors bmi baby putting out a press release which appeared to contain admissions that they had been pressurising the programme to give deliberately erroneous forecasts.
The allegations are that in an attempt to encourage people to fly abroad, bmi baby had requested that ITV Wales forecasts give overly bad forecasts for weather in Wales, juxtaposing these with optimistic outlooks for cities like Alicante, Geneva, Amsterdam and Prague which are all destinations for bmi baby flights from Cardiff.
Suspicions began to grow when it was demonstrated that rain had been forecast for South East Wales for 143 consecutive days, which was considered rather high even for such a notoriously damp region. These doubts were magnified when various forms of extreme weather conditions were predicted. In one example, snow was forecast for Tenby for 12 seperate days in June. Ms Llinos Rees of Neath commented “I didn’t notice anything odd about them predicting rain every day, that’s fairly normal round here, but I did raise my eyebrows when they said that Briton Ferry was likely to be hit by a tornado.”
It appears that most people were unaware that the forecasts were more inaccurate than normal, as Mr James Thomas of Swansea said “I did think that we sometimes got sunny days after torrential rain and gale force winds were predicted, but I’ve never had much faith in the Met Office anyway”, while Dai Evans of Bridgend claimed that “I only watch it for the weather girls anyway, lovely smiles they have.”
However, experts suggest that even if people did realise that the forecasts were not matching reality, they would still have been subconsciously influenced by programmes that would show 80% of Wales enveloped in deep fog, before cutting immediately to images of bright sunshine in Spain or of glistening mountains in Switzerland.
In response to rising pressure, bmi baby released a statement which read: “bmi baby have never ordered ITV Wales to alter their forecasts in order to make foreign travel more appealing. While on some occasions there may have been a vague suggestion that it might be nice if our many enticing destinations were highlighted and that the general dismal state of the Welsh weather was emphasised, this was only blue sky thinking and our continued sponsorship of ITV Wales weather was in no way dependent on it.”
ITV Wales has thus far declined to comment on the allegations.