Two top weather experts in Hungary were fired after a misguided forecast caused political turmoil.
The “Europe’s largest fireworks display” was organized for Saturday night to celebrate St Stephen’s Day, the national holiday.
The government delayed the event seven hours prior to the scheduled start due to extreme weather warnings.
However, the weather remained calm, leading to the dismissal of the head of the weather service and the deputy’s head.
Around 40,000 fireworks were available to be launched from 240 points in Budapest’s Danube River, at a distance of 5 km (3 miles). This display is usually watched by more than two million people.
Due to extreme weather warnings, the government delayed the event by a week.
The National Meteorological Service predicted a rainstorm, but it changed direction and hit eastern Hungary instead. It did not reach the capital.
On Sunday, the service apologized publicly on its Facebook page, explaining that the “least probable” outcome occurred and that uncertainty is part of weather forecasting
It was too late.
Monday’s firing of the chief service officers was done by Laszlo Palakovics, Innovation Minister.
Hungary’s reaction has been mixed.
Nearly 100,000 people signed a petition calling for fireworks to be canceled during times of war in Ukraine and austerity back home.
However, government supporters were furious at the ineptness of forecasters and hope that the display will go ahead as planned next weekend.