Who are these crazy people out chasing tornadoes?

National Geographic News has an interview with Tim Samaras — an engineer, a scientist who studies severe storm systems, and a tornado chaser. Not all chasers are professionals like this. For many people, it's a hobby often motivated by a desire to help keep other people safe. Personally, I see a lot of similarities between hobbyist tornado chasers and the HAM radio folks — in fact, there's a lot of overlap between the two communities. And, as Samaras explains, if you want to get involved, there's training you really ought to do first.


  1. I’ve been a Skywarn storm spotter for a few years, and I got out for my first chase this weekend on Saturday. 

    Its a thrilling thing. The science is amazing, and yet so much is still not understood!

    1. Right, they didn’t mention the third type of tornado-chasers, a car full of adrenaline junkies roaming the country roads, drinking a few beers and keeping a close eye on the weather report.
      Damn, I gotta say, it DOES sound like fun.  In Oklahoma, I’d be cranking up the Flaming Lips on the car stereo.

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