Maybe some of the disconnect in this discussion comes from the fact that our weather forum chose (several years ago) to tag the threads with the highest level of alert issued by Met E. This may create an impression that the weather forum endorses the warning levels and the system of county by county warnings.
There is no actual behind the scenes structure to this weather forum that could justify any such assumptions. People have fallen into certain roles, more by the absence of anyone else who wants to fill them. We don't have some committee assigning tasks or responsibilities. The decision to follow Met E warnings came after a period when individual thread starters were randomly assigning what they thought should be the alert levels. With both Darwin and Ophelia we were having some background chats among half a dozen mods and leading posters, about when to go red. If I remember correctly, we actually went red with Darwin before the met service did. With Ophelia we were into the co-ordinated alert era.
The only thing likely to improve if we went back to the old system (where we called the alert level ourselves) might be that we would probably twin these independent alerts to maps showing where they applied. If you're going to go independent, your first move would probably be to free yourself up from the county by county problem.
OTOH, you would introduce the element of the decision-maker(s) coming up with a less accurate overall alert structure than the Met (even after the county by county handicap). This might be a source of derision if we overdid it, and serious legal trouble for Boards.ie if we underdid things. Even over at IWO, we take the same approach -- better to co-ordinate and hope for a good performance, than to issue independent warnings as some do, and end up with bad results and trouble that can be avoided by saying, "this is the official alert, take it or leave it."
But we can improve the status quo by issuing interpretations of the alerts that attempt to pinpoint the actual boundaries.
Timing is a separate issue. It was fairly obvious from most of the guidance that north Mayo, Sligo, north Leitrim and west Ulster would be waiting a long time to get into the stronger winds, and when they did, the storm might be in a declining phase. I'm not sure if a lot of the public whether interacting with our thread or not, caught that detail, but I think the met service warnings did.
I hope we have one more interesting storm because I am eager to try to upgrade our response in the ways described, if the moderators permit. But I think we are stuck with the overall structure of colour coding our threads in lock-step, otherwise we are openly saying we think we can do better. Maybe we can and maybe we cannot. The past record on that is mixed.
So I think it has been a good discussion to have, it's natural that people who do put forward an effort here might think, well if we're going to read ambiguous criticism of forecasts, let's at least put out our own forecasts rather than having a hybrid system of partly their forecasts, partly our own, and hope it all blends into one comprehensive united entity. Sometimes as with Ophelia there are fairly sharp differences of opinion (as we had for areas likely to be west of its track). With this past event, differences were more subtle and I don't know if six different people had been asked to make independent forecasts, perhaps three would have been improvements and three would be non-improvements.