A Surfer’s Dream

Here in W.A. we are waiting for Cyclone George to hit land. What is really interesting is the marine forecast associated with this bit of a blow. Hands up those who spotted the strange word in the very formal language of the report below.

FORECAST
Sustained winds to 80 knots near centre increasing to 90 knots by 1200 UTC 08 March 2007.

Here in W.A. we are waiting for Cyclone George to hit land. What is really interesting is the marine forecast associated with this bit of a blow. Hands up those who spotted the strange word in the very formal language of the report below.

Within 100 nautical miles of centre:  clockwise winds above 34 knots with rough to very rough seas and moderate swell.

Within 65 nautical miles of centre: winds above 48 knots with very rough to high seas and moderate to heavy swell.

Within 20 nautical miles of centre : winds above 64 knots with very high to
phenomenal seas. Winds easing below 64 knots after cyclone moves over land.
(http://www.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/wrap_fwo.pl?IDW23100.txt )

Who would think that the weather could get so far out of line with standard bureaucratese as to force scientists to use the word “Phenomenal”!

7 responses to “A Surfer’s Dream

  1. I’ll be paying my first visit to Australia this fall. It would be my fondest hope that the word “phenomenal” apply only in the positive to the scenery, the food, the people. And never in the negative to the weather. In the meantime, duck inside the nearest hidey hole til George blows out of town.

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  2. Maybe the weather forecaster who wrote that little report is a surfer dude.

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  3. Linda, I’m well away from George at the moment although I will be heading into its remnants on Monday. Which part of Aus will you be visiting?
    hmh, We become a little blase about cyclones but this one has suddenly turned serious. Around 3am a mining camp was destroyed and it looks like 3 people were killed. Reports are still hazy because communications are poor but I hope these reports are wrong.

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  4. “Phenomenal”, eh? Do I detect the hand of the almighty here?

    We haven’t had a cyclone on this side of the continent in a decade and all our dams are dry as dust. No doubt all the god-botherers here started prayed for rain two hours too late. In those two hours, the planet rotated and now you guys have a double-dose.

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  5. All this strange weather began several years ago when Queensland upset the natural order of things by winning the Sheffield Shield.

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  6. Totally awesome, dude. Don’t forget your board!

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  7. David, I won’t be near the coast but may still get very wet with the second cyclone coming through! I canoe rather than surf. It isn’t as easy to fall off a canoe! 🙂

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