Bright weather forecasts through The Weather Channel iPhone and iPad apps are now reflective of the situation on the ground in the popular tourist destination.
Independent Member for Indi, Cathy McGowan AO, was pleased to receive correspondence from the Government last week confirming the US-based Weather Channel had now altered its weather forecasting data procedure to more accurately portray the weather in Bright.
Bright Pine Valley Tourist Park owner David Pratt contacted Ms McGowan’s office earlier this year to ask whether she could act on his behalf. Mr Pratt was frustrated with the weather information being fed to the apps for Mt Hotham’s forecast and would have been happier with Wangaratta forecast, which was closer to conditions in Bright than the mountain. He believed tourists were being put off venturing to Bright because of the incorrect weather forecasts and this was hampering business.
Ms McGowan represented Mr Pratt’s concerns to the Government on several occasions seeking representation to the US-based Weather Channel. Mr Pratt also contacted the US Consul following US Consul-General Mary Warlick’s visit to Indi to request assistance in getting the data feed changed.
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Environment, Senator the Hon, Simon Birmingham, contacted Ms McGowan’s office last week with a positive response. Weather Channel apps have recently been switched to a New Enhanced Forecast System, which resolves the forecast data to the exact latitude, longitude and elevation requested. The Weather Channel expects this to be much more indicative of the weather in Bright.
The Weather Channel also apologised for any inconvenience which occurred due to the incorrect data being posted for the Alpine tourist town.
Ms McGowan thanked the Government for pursuing the problem and the company for acting to improve its information.
“This demonstrates how Government can represent the community to reach a good outcome,” Ms McGowan said.
“Bright relies heavily on tourism and any lost trade through incorrect weather information is a major disappointment. I’m pleased the Weather Channel has changed its system to provide a more accurate picture of the weather in Bright and people can now have faith in the forecast.”