A weatherman for a Little Rock television station offered an apology Tuesday after a winter storm that had been expected to drop accumulating snow failed to develop in central Arkansas.
Todd Yakoubian, a meteorologist for ABC affiliate KATV-TV, Channel 7, wasn't the only weathercaster whose prediction didn't pan out. The National Weather Service issued a winter storm advisory for points including Little Rock and the developing storm led newscasts and made headlines over the weekend and Monday.
But Yakoubian was in a small minority in one respect: He took to his Facebook page and blog first thing Tuesday to apologize for forecasting a snow that never fell.
"I don't think anyone takes it as bad as I do when it comes to busting a forecast," Yakoubian wrote on Facebook, acknowledging he "should have bailed on the snow forecast" as the prediction models changed. "I'm very sorry."
The post generated significant attention, with more than 1,800 likes and hundreds of comments by 9 a.m. An overwhelming majority appeared supportive, with many pointing out a missed forecast in a different situation would be worse.
"That bust is better than saying there would be no snow, only to wake up to a huge surprise," Steve Hopkins wrote.
Yakoubian followed up with a detailed explanation on his Arkansas Weather Blog, writing that the models suggested a significant winter storm until Sunday when things started to look "less and less impressive."
A short-term model that "has not performed well lately" suggested on Sunday that no snow at all would fall in central Arkansas, and that one turned out to be correct despite the model's spotty record with recent events, Yakoubian wrote.
He apologized twice more in the blog post for a forecast that was "nowhere close to being right."
"Once again, I'm very sorry," Yakoubian wrote. "That's the nature of weather forecasting. We have had a very good run so far this winter forecasting the onslaught of cold, snow, and ice. We got this one storm (or lack of) wrong."
Other television meteorologists also took to the web to explain or comment on the lack of snow.
Yakoubian's KATV colleague Barry Brandt also apologized in a Tweet while KTHV, Channel 11, meteorologist Sarah Fortner posted a photo of figure skater Ashley Wagner's disgusted look upon learning her score at the Olympics with the added caption "Waking up to RADAR this morning..."
And Greg Dee, a weatherman at KARK-TV, Channel 4, and KLRT, FOX16, posted the traditional winter storm photo of a ruler set level on the ground to measure the accumulated snow. There was just one caveat: There was no snow in the image.