Netherlands councillors call for punishment on wrong weather forecasts

London, July 16 (ANI): Local councillors in the Netherlands are demanding that weather forecasters who get their predictions wrong should be fined.

The demand comes from Labour councillors in Hoek van Holland who hold "bad" forecasts responsible for spoiling the local seaside trade.

The demand follow claims that wrong forecasts in both the Netherlands and Belgium are damaging outdoor attractions as day tourists cancel plans to go out in the wake of poor weather prospects.

Joep Thonissen, head of Recron, the Dutch tourist attraction association, said that "incorrect" forecasts were causing "considerable damage" to visitor attractions.

"Last week it was really good weather over most of the country but the weather forecasts were full of heavy rain and thunderstorms, so people stayed home," the Telegraph quoted him as saying.

KNMI, the commercial weather bureau, based at Hilversum, near Amsterdam, whose forecasts are widely used by Dutch TV and newspapers, has been blamed with Thonissen saying: "Heavy rain above Hilversum does not mean that is the case in the rest of the country."

Pieter van Cutsem, who runs a small hotel in Hoek van Holland, agrees that forecasters should be "punished" for incorrect predictions.

"Despite having more forecasting tools than ever before they often get it wrong," Cutsem said.

"Recent weather reporting has been completely inaccurate and it is hitting local businesses dearly because people are cancelling bookings. I agree they should be fined on the grounds of disseminating incorrerct information," he said.

Cees Molenaars, a spokesman for KNMI told the Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf: "TV, radio and newspapers use the raw data we deliver but it is up to them to how their forecasts turn out."

Last week, tourist attraction bosses in Belgium called for "less pessimistic forecasts" and urged meteorologists to pay equal attention to sun as they do to rain. (ANI)