Sunday, 7 June 2009

Windy Rambles

Yesterday's posting invited the question as to what a Force 6 was though the questioner correctly guessed it related to the wind. The answer lies in a scale, created in 1805 by Sir Francis Beaufort, and is how wind strength is measured. 0 on the scale is calm whilst 12 is a hurricane. It was designed for seamen but translated into the effect on the land it can be summarised as follows:-

0 Calm Calm; smoke rises verticall.
1 Light air Direction of wind shown by
smoke drift, but not by wind
2 Light Breeze Wind felt on face; leaves
rustle; ordinary vanes moved
by wind.
3 Gentle Breeze Leaves and small twigs in
constant motion; wind extends
light flag.
4 Moderate Breeze Raises dust and loose paper;
small branches are moved.
5 Fresh Breeze Small trees in leaf begin to
sway; crested wavelets form on
inland waters.
6 Strong Breeze Large branches in motion;
whistling heard in telegraph
wires; umbrellas used with
7 Near Gale Whole trees in motion;
inconvenience felt when walking
against the wind.
8 Gale Breaks twigs off trees;
generally impedes progress.
9 Severe Gale Slight structural damage occurs
(chimney-pots and slates removed).
10 Storm Seldom experienced inland; trees
uprooted; considerable structural
damage occurs.
11 Violent Storm Very rarely experienced;
accompanied by wide-spread damage.
12 Hurricane

When I was little and the radio was the main form of communication to one's house from the outside world the news would always be followed by the weather and shipping forecasts. Programmes would occasionally be interrupted by a 'Warning to shipping' if the weather was especially nasty - one of the joys of living in an island nation which, at that time, had a great deal of shipping around its shores.

The shipping forecast always related to areas with romantic sounding names like Rockall, Bailey, Dogger, Fisher and German Bight and came from the equally romantic sounding 'Coastguard Stations'.

On a total change of subject - GB has been invited to play in the Yvonne Yates Golf Croquet Invitation over in New Zealand later in the year. This means he's getting seriously good and he'll be playing against top-class International players. At this rate I'll have to stop mocking this crocket stuff. Mind you, it would help him a lot if the airline (not mentioning any names but its British!) that's just managed to lose his best mallet could find the thing again. How do you 'lose' a mallet and its case when the thing has his name and address all over it?  


  1. Congratulations GB!!! Very cool!
    SS, I love the wind ratings & shall be using them to describe the velocity around here!!!
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  2. In answer to the last sentence. Very easily. It is a challenge to them I am sure.
    Anyway pass the congrats to GB from this ole girl.
    I remember I used to sit on my Dad's lap and feel bored listening to the weather. On the other hand, these days the mere mention of the names fills me with nostalgia! Ahhhhhh.
    Love Granny

  3. S.S.,
    Enjoyed the description of the wind forces.
    Congratulations to GB!
    I wonder if someone else did not find themselves suddenly in wont of a championship croquet mallet?
    I sure hope it turns up safe and sound. And ready to play.

  4. Yes I miss the shipping forecast. It still exists but in a form so condensed as to be a shadow of it's former self.
    Beaufort Scale is cleverer still, it includes sea state. Despite the horror high wind can engender in sheltered water it is generally no problem. It's the waves that cause the problems, great blog, i'm just starting out so will watch a professional with interest, all the best Adrian.


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