The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
-Psalm 19:1

Do you know that God controls the clouds and makes his lightning flash?
-Job 37:15

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

On my soapbox...

Unfortunately, with TWC not having had any other weather to talk about, they are seeking out every scrap of video, every morsel of weather related news they can from this weekend's tornado outbreak. They are showing people who drove into the tornado and survived, people whose homes crashed around them, church leveled around them, tornadoes chased them... and they survived. What message does that send to the public? Go on... use that fancy iPhone of yours to get right up close and personal and shoot great video, so the Weather Channel will make you famous. No, no, you don't need to know anything about weather or how to stay safe, just shoot it and send it in, and we'll give you a by-line... if you survive it. I am afraid that TWC's iWitness and all these tornado chasing reality shows (yes, yes, I know I was on one), where people get closer, closer... to the point of actually being inside the doggone tornado (how insane and stupidly dangerous is that?!) are creating a breed of fanatics, who know nothing about what it is they are chasing, but the thrill of being close to danger and seeing their video on TV drive them to the brink of death. I was disgusted when I saw a video this morning of a couple watching a tornado approach them. While she shouted in panic, he shot video, and told her that they would just hop in the ditch if it got close... yeehaw, just like we saw on that there "Twister" movie, right? Dude, she had the right idea... you were clueless and she was reasonably scared. Then, there was the footage of the man on his front porch filming a tornado's approach as sirens are wailing, warning him to get himself and his screaming scared children to safety, but no, he had to shoot the footage to send into TWC. Tornadoes kill. Let me repeat that... TORNADOES KILL. If you don't know what you're doing, seek shelter. My heart is sad over the public perspective as it seems to be developing regarding storm chasing and the growing need to provide iWitness coverage to TWC goons. Be safe, people. Now, let me just hop off that soapbox.

To quote Benjamin Franklin: Some are weather-wise; some are otherwise.
It is with a heavy heart that I see the models are setting up to blast the SAME region this weekend.It breaks my heart to think of them digging through the rubble and learning that there is yet another target drawn over them. How terrifying that must be. My thoughts and prayers are with them as they deal with the trauma and tragedy... as they deal with the wreckage left after the storm. May God fill them with a peace that transcends all understanding. Guard their hearts and minds, Lord.

Have a blessed day!


  1. Dew, I felt the same way this morning. I may pass this entry on to some of my friends who think severe weather is harmless because it hasn't happened to them yet...

    I could go on and on about his, but you've summed it up perfectly.

  2. Amen Sister. No doubt someone is going to perish doing this. They may already have, but we will never know. Definitely looks like another rough weekend ahead.


  3. How would we know, unless they are a chaser, or they find the video camera nearby. They don't live to send it in to TWC, so they just become a storm statistic. Could be one of the 10 in Yazoo City...

  4. BRAVO, BRAVO Dewdrop!!..My thoughts exactly!!

  5. Just more examples of desperate people doing foolish things for extra money. I suppose it's a lot like these wildlife hunters on Animal Planet; just trying to look brave and dangerous to a natioanl audience. If you don't respect nature the way God created it and try to understand it, you're going to get hurt - BAD.

    Thanks for your insight -

  6. Unfortunately, Miss Laura, they don't even pay the iWitness folks, so most are just doing it for the "glory" or the "fame". Senseless and reckless endangerment. I chase weather, with total respect for what it is capable of. I study it in an effort to stay as safe as possible. I don't do it for money or fame or anything like that. I do it because I love it.

  7. I am still amazed by some of the videos that are surfacing from other "chasers" of the Goodnight, TX tornado that I documented. I won't name names, but I do know of at least two chasers who got way, way too close to the tornado just to get "the shot", one of whom decided to park on the side of the road next to a row of utility poles and stayed there to watch as the tornado crossed the poles. Stupid and reckless! And don't even get me started on the "chaser" incident on Saturday in MS, all because a "chaser" was "frustrated" from a week of busts.

    I got my shots from a completely open, completely safe road just south of the tornado, and was able to record it as it moved to the northeast, away from me and ya know what, the shots are exciting and cinematic and give you sense of the power of the twister, all without me having put myself in danger to get them.

    Unfortunately, I'm afraid it is only going to get worse, as the media appetite for "extreme" footage of "dangerous" storms seems to be insatiable. It's saddening and angering at the same time.

  8. I couldn't believe the crowds that were lining the sides of the roads when I was watching some of the live streams and videos!

    Storm chasing is growing and growing and technology makes it so much easier. Unfortunately with the ease of technology, people become lazy and don't think they need anything other than a laptop and a vehicle.

    I can't say much. I'm a new chaser, who likes to watch live streams and reality shows. I wouldn't say I was influenced by them to be a chaser, because my love of weather goes way back. I also like to learn, and I want to chase "correctly." I want to plan my own forecast, know how to read the skies, and most importantly, I do not have any desire to get as close as some of these crazy people do! It sends the wrong message to some people.

    I certainly hope we don't have a repeat of the events of Saturday with this new system. The tornado in Dekalb AL close to here has now been rated an EF-4!

  9. We saw the devastation here on TV. I can't believe people are doing what you described. Although we have no hopers here too who went down to the beach to watch a suspected tsunami arrive. Lucky it was very small but......

  10. I could have easily "seen" and EF3 tornado Saturday night. I pretty much knew right where it was going to cross I65, on the Blount-Jefferson line. I was 17 miles or so south of that point. But, it was night, and I realized it could have turned right on me, so I stayed put. Later I was kicking myself a bit for playing it too safe. I could have at least driven 10 miles north and kept watching radar. But, I will always try to err on the side of caution. It was a smaller stage as it crossed the interstate, but I did see trees down on the side of the road on my way home.

    Night time is not the right time for serios close up chasing.

    Great article!


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