Weather Sensationalism: Gimme A Break, Please

Heat Index, Wind Chill, BOO! Be afraid, be very afraid!

When they run out of REAL scary weather phenomena to frighten us with, weather salesman resort to HEAT INDEX and WIND CHILL. The “feels like” numbers.

These artificial numbers are designed to keep your thermostats set for the maximum oil use setting (MOUS), summer or winter. This also happens to be the fastest tolerable rate money leaves your wallet.

What, you say? But these are scientific numbers! Read on:

Is The Wind Chill Temperature Accurate?

It’s impossible to measure accuracy for such a subjective “feel like” temperature. The formula was designed during World War II to better measure battlefield conditions. In November of 2001 a new wind chill formula was put into use by the National Weather Service. It now has less exaggerated results and the biggest change in the formula is that it takes into account the average winds at 5 feet above the ground instead of 33 feet. The higher in the air you are, the faster the winds. So the old formula using winds at 33 ft. was not a good indication of what we humans were really experiencing. Why 33 ft.? Because that’s the height of many of the anemometers or wind speed & direction measuring devices.


The wind chill temperature is based on the air temperature and the wind speed assuming you were naked. That’s right naked!

Well! I feel warmer/cooler already!



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