Debate Magazine

I Wish They'd Make up Their Minds

Posted on the 31 October 2013 by Markwadsworth @Mark_Wadsworth
People explain the Coriolis effect using the analogy of a roundabout e.g. Dr Helen Czerski.
So objects or wind moving in a straight line in the northern hemisphere will curve slightly to the right, good stuff, I understand that. Now, if you are constantly turning to the right, then looked at from above you are moving clockwise, are you not?
But we know that hurricanes, tornados and the trade winds move anti-clockwise, so something has got lost in translation here.
What is even more irritating is that the supposed experts cheerfully explain that winds turn to the right and then in the next breath say that this is why hurricanes etc turn anti-clockwise. Do these people just learn stuff parrot-fashion without ever wondering whether it actually makes sense?

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