Malta is about to get considerably windy as of today and it could persist throughout the whole weekend… but weather forecasters can’t seem to agree on whether this means higher or lower than usual temperatures.
Yesterday, two very different-looking forecasts were uploaded onto Facebook within hours of each other, and they couldn’t have been more conflicting.
“Be prepared!” the post by The Weather Page Malta started. “The moderate to rather strong southeasterly winds from northern Africa expected from Friday till Monday will bring not only warmer, humid temperatures but plenty of airborne Sahara desert sand over Malta and Gozo – bad news for people suffering from asthma!”
And with a 75% confidence in its forecast being quoted, it all seemed very likely that these coming days would bring hot, sandy weather with them.
For people who had just washed their cars and balconies from last week’s annoying “xita tal-ħamrija”, the page even had some reassuring words: “This time the fine desert sand will remain mostly airborne and rain is unlikely therefore dust deposition should be minimal, if at all.”
Four hours later, however, another forecasting page posted about something completely different: an incoming “cold polar air mass”.
“Temperatures across Malta and Gozo this week are expected to be below average from tomorrow Thursday,” the similarly-named Malta Weather posted, quoting a similarly-high 70% confidence in its forecast.
It didn’t take long for people to notice the conflicting forecasts… and for the pages themselves to step in and throw some shade at each other.
“You guys have just said that this month will be warmer than average,” one user said on the cold prediction, to which the page passive-aggressively replied that this will only apply “for a few days” and the user should have read a previous post on monthly averages a little better.
“On the other Maltese weather site it says hotter weather weekend and sand storm…” another confused comment read, with another quipping “not even the weather knows what it wants this year!”
Meanwhile, back on the warmer forecast’s post, some inter-page shade was being thrown around.
“They don’t even have their data right, tomorrow is Thursday, not Wednesday,” The Weather Page Malta said, referring to a typo in its competitor’s caption which was later fixed. “Besides, it’s still not going to be cold.”
As for the official Malta International Airport forecast, the outlook of the coming days at least confirms the windy nature of this weekend.
Today is set to be the windiest of the lot, with gusts of Force 5 and 6 actually coming from the northwest. This confirms the somewhat polar direction of the wind, but with highs that feel like 16°C again, maybe it won’t be that cold. Having said that, tonight is set to feel as cold as 9°C, the only sub-10 degree evening of the whole week.
Meanwhile, tomorrow sees the wind shifting to the east, and while the weekend will see gusts never go higher than Force 5 again, the wind will continue shifting downwards. By the time Saturday and Sunday arrive, the airport’s forecast predicts constantly moderately strong winds from the south, with temperatures that will nudge up to 17°C by Sunday and lows which escalate to that evening’s balmy 13°C… nearly as warm as today’s daytime temperature.
So maybe, just maybe, in a very weird way, both forecasts are correct? I don’t know man, I would definitely recommend wearing layers you can very easily put on / take off as the weather gets hotter / colder. Or, you know, stay safe and avoid going out too much while we’re still in a pandemic?