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Frequently Asked Questions

 
 

What tools do you use to predict the weather?

We mostly utilise a system called the Global Forecast System and is run by the United States Governmental agency responsible for weather forecasting. The GFS system is run four times a day, and produces forecasts for up to 16 days in advance, but with decreased spatial resolution after 10 days. The GFS system is not copyrighted and publicly available. The GFS forecasts have also improved considerably recently and are becoming more and more accurate.

If you follow our weather forecasts regularly you might have noticed that we also sometimes we mention the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, ECMWF. It is based at Shinfield Park, Reading, United Kingdom. It operates one of the largest supercomputer complexes in Europe and the world's largest archive of numerical weather prediction data. This supercomputer produces two forecasts daily for the next 10 days and we rely a lot on this model as it has proved itself very accurate this year. The ECMWF is most of the time referred to as the European Model. We rely on part of the data which this organisation produces and is in the public domain meaning it can be utilized by anyone.

It is later up to the weatherman to decide which system to go for, depending on his experience, local observations and trends.

 

Why do we (sometimes) get the weather forecast wrong?

Even though we have lots of data and human experience, we do admit that sometimes we get something wrong. We admit we are not perfect, although our predictions are most of the time correct and we only miss slightly. For example most of the time our wind direction model is nearly perfect, however small variations might mean that patches of rain or lightning miss us completely. So next time we miss, just remember that 99.9% of the time we are correct.

 

Why cannot you provide me with a personalized weather forecast for a particular date, time or location?

Due to the huge amount of private message and emails we receive requesting specific weather information for particular dates and time at specific locations, we are unable to answer each request in detail. Therefore we suggest you keep an eye on our frequent weather forecasts.

 

Are you affiliated with any other local business / government organisation in Malta?

No, we are completely independent, we have no affiliation with any other business or organisation in Malta and no affiliation with any other meteorological service in Malta or Gozo and no affiliation with the National Meteorological Office at Luqa Airport.

 

What guarantees do you provide with the weather forecast?

We do not offer any guarantees whatsoever with our weather forecasts or reports. In fact our weather forecasts are provided for information purposes only and you should not rely on the information we provide if you are taking decisions related to financial or health and safety issues.

 

What is the difference between Apparent temperatures and usual High temperature measurement in weather forecasts?


The maximum temperatures that are measured by instruments are referred to as ‘high’. However this does not show how the human body reacts to other variables.


Our “Apparent temperature” takes in consideration various variables such as wind direction, wind speeds and humidity. For example during summer the temperature may actually be perceived as hotter if humidity is high whilst in winter a strong wind can make your body actually colder.

 

Why don't you publish articles in both English & Maltese?

Many people have been messaging us asking for Maltese translations. Unfortunately our resources do not allow us to provide forecasts in both English and Maltese at the moment, we had to make a decision. According to surveys most of our followers understand both Maltese and English, so we decided to stick to English, we are trying to keep it as simple as possible without too much terminology when possible. Foreign followers are increasing.

A very small minority seems to keep insisting that we should write in Maltese because Maltese is "our" language and they don't care about the foreign readers. They are wrong, as English is also our National language according to our own constitution. Having said that we assure everyone that we love the Maltese language and we hope that in the near future we would be able to provide detailed forecasts in both English and Maltese, unfortunately at the moment, this is not feasible, however we will try to upload short summaries in Maltese as well during winter to ensure everyone is kept in the loop.

 
 
 

if you have any other question please email info@firstmalta.com

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