The WMO World Weather Information Service (WWIS) is a global website that presents official r observations, forecasts and climatological information for selected cities supplied by National Meteorological & Hydrological Services (NMHSs). It is hosted and coordinated by the Hong Kong Observatory (HKO) of Hong Kong, China. The Website includes mobile phone weather apps for ease of access to information by users.
A WMO meeting of representatives of the 11 language versions of WWIS which include China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, China, Italy, Oman, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation and Spain was held in Muscat, Oman from 5 to 7 November 2019. The meeting discussed the advances to be introduced into WWIS website to modernize it and, most importantly, strengthen its role as the authoritative source of weather warnings, vital to save lives and livelihoods.
Currently, WWIS provides official weather and climate information for about 2,800 cities of 170 WMO Members. The meeting agreed to implement technical improvements to allow visitors to the WWIS website to link to more detailed warnings from their national meteorological service or warning authority. Hence users will easily understand likely effects of expected weather and how to best respond to threats it may cause.
At the opening of the meeting, Dr Juma Said Al-Maskari, Director General of Meteorology and Permanent Representative of Oman with WMO, gave a commitment to continue to host the Arabic version of the website.
“WWIS processes tremendous potential to conveniently provide official and highly dependable weather information for use by the public, media and other specialized users, in a way that assists NMHSs extend their reach of services to national and global users, and thus to increase the visibility and credibility of NMHSs,” said Dr Said Al-Maskari.
Other important outcomes of the meeting include possible future enhancements of the Severe Weather Information Centre (SWIC) website which, like WWIS, will be an important component of the WMO Global Multi-hazard Alert System (GMAS), which is currently under development.