Fri, July 19

Commentary: National Weather Service needs to take a look outside when it’s raining

Bill Bullock

Bill Bullock

So, I got up Sunday morning and decided to check my rain gauge on my way in from picking up the morning papers. Hmm. Just under six-tenths of an inch. I couldn’t help but wonder what the National Weather Service had for their official total for Saturday afternoon’s shower.

After all, on the weekend of July 15th we had one of those two-inch plus rains in an hour and a half that made 150 yards of Bates Road completely invisible under a foot of water. It stayed that way for a few hours until the rains in Verde Village 6 & 7 quit and the Walmart parking lot quit draining into the wash along Del Rio.

We’ve lived on that island many times in the last 33 years so it’s no big deal although the first time was pretty intense. I was also out of town the week of the 24th through the 30th. My beautiful wife told me daily that it was raining - again. My employees - working in Grey Fox Ridge and the Crossroads at Mingus subdivisions were having difficulty working because of the rain.

So, I checked my rain gauge on the 31st to find an accumulation of 3.4 inches over that period of time. Overall, I received about 7 inches of rain in July. So, when I saw that this fine newspaper reported that the National Weather Service official totals for July was 1.8 something inches I was pretty much aghast. I mean, do they actually “measure” the rain or just use a .2571 mulitiplier to come up with their total?

Let me get this straight because I know all of you liberals out there believe everything that the government says is true and believe the 1.8 inches thing - so what am I doing wrong? After all, you said it so it has to be true.

I have a straight three-quarter-inch tube with measurements aiming straight at the sky. It is not tipped in any direction. It is not under a tree. It is not where an overhang can dump into it. It is out in the open aimed at the sky.

Through my entire 44 years in this valley there has been a bit of discussion as to where the official temperatures and rainfall amounts are actually taken. I believe that once upon a time it was at Tuzigoot although now I believe it to be at the airport. I recognize that rainfall amounts vary dramatically from location to location in the Verde Valley.

That being said, Grey Fox Ridge is within less than a mile of Tuzigoot. Remember my employees were having trouble working in Grey Fox Ridge the week of the 24th. Crossroads at Mingus is within a mile or so of the airport as is Verde Village 6 & 7. So my next question is does the National Weather Service actually have anyone stationed in any location in Cottonwood? Or have they paid some “egghead” $300,000 to create a program that counts raindrops as they pass and calculates their frequency and mass to create an “official rainfall amount”?

Or are they paying a kindergarten dropout $200,000 a year to dump out the rain gauge and report in? Hey liberals. This is the science that you so strongly believe in.

But don’t expect a conservative like me to buy it. As for me I don’t think they know Shinola from some other brown gooey substance .... Just saying.

Bill Bullock, Grey Fox Ridge, LLC, C & B Construction, is a resident of Cottonwood.