Written By John Bryant

Extreme Weather Events in California this week are a reminder of the growing need for Forensic Meteorologists everywhere.

Potholes in the Mid-South are a reminder of how many people were affected by a series of Winter Storms just over a month ago. Forensic Meteorologists piece together exact weather conditions at a specific time for a precise location for individuals, insurance companies, and lawyers.


The impact of Extreme Weather: Another Reminder from California on the extreme weather pattern shifts expected this year and why you might consider using a Forensic Meteorologist if extreme weather events have affected you this year or last. I think about the series of winter storms that impacted the Mid-South just over a month ago. As of last week, Memphis had more snow than Minneapolis. The weather has been extremely full of rapid ups and downs so far in 2024.

As the forecast for extreme rainfall, flooding, snow, and storms in California this week illustrates, weather events continue to become more frequent and intense across the globe. Events like these cause immediate damage and disruption and reveal the hidden costs to communities that extend long after the weather has passed. Enter Forensic Meteorologists. In times of disaster, forensic meteorologists step in to help understand what happened, where, when, and why. In 2023 alone, there were an unprecedented 28 billion dollar disasters, and I expect to see these more often as our weather patterns continue to shift.

You may not be familiar with the work of forensic meteorologists, but they play an essential behind the scenes role in events like the one unfolding in California. Typically, forensic meteorologists come in months after the storm hit. Forensic meteorologists use their expertise in meteorology, climatology, and weather analysis to conduct investigations after severe weather strikes. They review weather data, radar imagery, satellite photos, and other evidence to determine the precise causes and impacts of extreme events. It reminds me of the series of Winter Storms that affected the Mid-South just over a month ago. I am investigating several events that took place exactly where and when and the specific impacts.

This type of analysis is crucial for emergency response, insurance claims, and developing more resilient infrastructure and policies. By piecing together the meteorological puzzle, forensic meteorologists can help answer questions like What conditions led to the flooding, ice, or whatever type of weather these events bring. How intense were the winds that toppled trees and power lines? Findings like these provide valuable lessons to help protect lives and property the next time similar weather hits.

While the storms in California are grabbing headlines this week, their message resonates globally. Extreme Weather Events know no borders. If a weather event has affected you this year or in 2023, and you cannot remember the exact conditions at the time, you need a forensic meteorologist. Feel free to email me on the contact section at the top of my website if you need certified data. I can even order it from the Department of Commerce, if necessary.

Here is a direct link to click on if you need to contact me for a forensic meteorology consultation from a past weather event.

Weather and Climate Expert