Storm Chasers Seek Thrills, But Also Chance To Warn Others | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio
Filed Under:

Storm Chasers Seek Thrills, But Also Chance To Warn Others

Play associated audio

When disaster strikes, our natural instinct is to take cover and seek shelter. But in severe weather, especially the type that breeds tornadoes like we saw in Oklahoma and parts of the Midwest this week, there are those who ride toward the storm.

Oklahoma native Chris McBee is one of those so-called storm chasers, and he was on the ground near Moore, the area hit hardest by Monday's massive tornado that experts now say was an EF-5, the most powerful.

McBee told All Things Considered host Melissa Block that he was about a half a mile south of the tornado as it crossed into Moore when he captured his dramatic video.

"There was debris raining out of the air on top of us," McBee says. "It just gave us a sick feeling because we knew it was hitting a lot of structures and really affecting a lot of lives."

McBee says that while chasing storms and documenting tornadoes is a thrill, he also does it to help the National Weather Service know what is happening on the ground so it can warn those in the path of the storm.

"That's really a priority among storm chasers," he says. "It certainly is a thrill to be out there ... [but] we're trying to warn people in the path as well."

A native of nearby Norman, Okla., McBee says severe weather is a regular part of life. Monday's damage, however, is the worst he's ever seen as a storm chaser.

"There's no way to get used to the destruction we saw yesterday."

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

'Team America' Is Benched: Won't Return To Theaters, Reports Say

One day after some U.S. theaters vowed to screen Team America: World Police in the place of The Interview, whose release was canceled, word has emerged that Team America has also been pulled.
NPR

What The Change In U.S.-Cuba Relations Might Mean For Food

The decision to normalize relations is driving all kinds of speculation about American food companies opening up shop in Cuba. But analysts say: Don't expect to see McDonald's there anytime soon.
WAMU 88.5

Environmental Group Calls On Maryland To Ban Fracking

The Chesapeake Climate Action Network is calling on Maryland to follow the lead of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who this week put a moratorium on the natural gas-extraction process.
NPR

North Korea Has Invested Heavily In Cyberattacks

American officials have concluded that North Korea was behind the hack of Sony Pictures Company. Melissa Block talks to James Lewis of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.