Will you need your snow boots tomorrow? Should you bring an umbrella? Accurate weather predictions are important for planning our day-to-day activities. Farmers need information to help them plan for the planting and harvesting of their crops. Airlines need to know about local weather conditions in order to schedule flights. Weather forecasting helps us to make more informed daily decisions, and may even help keep us out of danger. Consciously or unconsciously, nearly everyone considers the weather before leaving home each day. Our awareness of daily weather helps us make many decisions, including our choice of clothes, transportation, and daily activities.
Aside from the daily practical benefits of knowing the weather, the economic benefits of more accurate weather forecasts are tremendous. For instance, a more accurate 24-hour forecast of heavy rain and thunderstorms along a cold front could allow airline dispatchers enough time to reroute their airplanes appropriately and thereby help alleviate costly delays. Farmers (for example in Florida orange grove) could make the correct decision regarding deployment or non-deployment of freeze prevention methods to save their crops if they are able to pinpoint a wintertime low temperature. An accurate forecast of a hurricane’s track, using the wind patterns, will help to make a sound decision to be made regarding evacuating thousands of families in the areas of concern. In military operations, there is a considerable historical record of instances when weather conditions have altered the course of battles, including examples when accurate forecasting has been a deciding factor in one side’s victory.