Just a 1 in 20
Council bosses are also being slammed for their decision to order less salt for icy roads this year.
A report by the TaxPayers’ Alliance shows councils have ordered 1.48million tonnes in 2010-11 compared with nearly 1.51m tonnes last winter.
TaxPayers’ Alliance policy analyst Chris Daniel said: “Many councils were clearly unprepared for the latest icy spell because they had ordered less salt than they did last year.
“It is unacceptable for councils to write off their failings by claiming that extreme winters in Britain are too rare an event for it to be worth preparing for them.
“This winter is the third in a row where severe weather has swept across the UK.
“The councils and highways agencies have no excuses for not having everything in place beforehand.”
Weather in any one winter is virtually independent (statistically speaking) of weather in preceding winters. And, despite there having been three severe winters in a row, there is only a 1:20 chance of there being a severe winter next year or in any subsequent year. In other words, bad winters cannot be considered an annual event.
This is the view of the Met Office, ..Furthermore, the incidence of severe winters is slowly declining due to global warming, although one important effect of global warming is that more snow is possible when severe weather events do occur.
The bizarre issue here is that the Met Office seems to want it both ways. It tells us that it can predict global warming – that it knows, for instance, what the climate is going to be like in 60 years time. But it will not allow clustering. And therein is a problem. If there is only a 1:20 chance of a severe winter, what are the chances of three 1:20 events happening in succession?
For the moment, though, the Met Office is holding the line, but for how long? There is a one in twenty chance that next year is as bad as this one … maybe. But what are the chances of four bad winters in a row? Whatever the odds, the stakes are even higher.
I haven't got a £33 million computer but one old bloodshot bleary eye tells me that "clustering" looks a possibility. This is simple gambler probability stats, any greasy fingered casino boss would be able to tell if the table was playing true or not by the smell of the numbers, so surely the Met Office which is gambling billions in the cost of our unpreparedness should be able to do the same.
But we can say with certainty that next winter, or if not that, the one after will be milder and so those who are holding the warmists' feet to the fire to make them confess this weather disproves their theory must expect their retaliation.
Their theory is unfalsifiable if however the bones fall, whatever the weather, they claim it is as forecast. And such a theory is unscientific.