What is a Terminal Aerodrome Forecasts (TAF)?

A Terminal Aerodrome Forecasts (TAF) is a weather forecast for the five-statute mile radius around an airport.

Each TAF is valid for a 24 or 30­hour time period and is updated four times a day at 0000Z, 0600Z, 1200Z, and 1800Z.  The TAF utilizes the same descriptors and abbreviations as used in the METAR report.  The TAF includes the following information in sequential order: type of report, station identifier, time and date, valid period dates and times, forecast wind, forecast visibility, forecast significant weather, forecast sky condition, forecast change group and probability.

TAF
KPIR 111130Z 1112/1212
TEMPO 1112/1114 5SM BR
FM1500 16015G25KT P6SM SCT040 BKN250 FM120000 14012KT P6SM BKN080 OVC150 PROB30 1200/1204 3SM TSRA BKN030CB
FM120400 1408KT P6SM SCT040 OVC080
TEMPO 1204/1208 3SM TSRA OVC030CB

Explanation: Routine TAF for Pierre, South Dakota…on the 11th day of the month, at 1130Z…valid for 24 hours from 1200Z on the 11th to 1200Z on the 12th…wind from 150° at 12 knots… visibility greater than 6 SM…broken clouds at 9,000 feet… temporarily, between 1200Z and 1400Z, visibility 5 SM in mist…from 1500Z winds from 160° at 15 knots, gusting to 25 knots visibility greater than 6 SM…clouds scattered at 4,000 feet and broken at 25,000 feet…from 0000Z wind from 140° at 12 knots…visibility greater than 6 SM…clouds broken at 8,000 feet, overcast at 15,000 feet…between 0000Z and 0400Z, there is 30 percent probability of visibility 3 SM…thunderstorm with moderate rain showers…clouds broken at 3,000 feet with cumulonimbus clouds…from 0400Z…winds from 140° at 8 knots…visibility greater than 6 miles…clouds at 4,000 scattered and overcast at 8,000… temporarily between 0400Z and 0800Z…visibility 3 miles… thunderstorms with moderate rain showers…clouds overcast at 3,000 feet with cumulonimbus clouds…end of report (=).

Reference(s):

FAA AC 00-45H Aviation Weather Services pg. 5-75
FAA-H-8083-25B Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge pg. 13-9

Other Aviation Weather Services