March 29, 2017

3 storm chasers die chasing a tornado. And not from the tornado.

"The cause of the crash remained under investigation. It was raining at the time of the collision, and there did not appear to be any tire skid marks, Sgt. John Gonzalez, a department spokesman, said...."
Today, apps on smartphones provide real-time data, making storm chasing a pursuit accessible to all — seasoned professionals and trained meteorologists, as well as homegrown enthusiasts with a thirst for thrills and the celebrity that comes with posting dramatic videos on YouTube.

“That information — available to everyone — says to a lot of people, ‘Let’s go chase this storm,’” [said Tim Marshall, a meteorologist and engineer at an engineering firm in Irving, Tex., who has been chasing severe storms since 1977.] “Back in the early days, I would have a storm to myself. Today, that would not happen.”

24 comments:

richlb said...

Oh, there were skid marks.

khesanh0802 said...

There are old storm chasers and there are bold storm chasers, but there are no old, bold storm chasers!

Fernandinande said...

In Trump's America tornadoes chase you.

Michael K said...

I watched the video. He ran a number of stop signs, probably assuming no traffic on those rural roads.

The video ended when you could see the fatal intersection just ahead. I assume that was edited out.

The two cars were both storm chasers and they collided. I assume they were looking for the tornado and did not expect another car.

The timing was perfect, unfortunately, for the three guys.

exhelodrvr1 said...

Damn that Darwin!!

AReasonableMan said...

When I was much younger I had a very skeezy friend. He used to have a recurring dream in which all his relatives were rushing to attend a family reunion and they ended up in a multi-car pileup, resulting in all their deaths. In the dream he was the sole inheritor.

rehajm said...

This is why you shouldn't climb Everest anymore, either.

The Godfather said...

For me, it's enough of a thrill to wake up in the morning.

Larry Day said...

So right rehang, In my youth I was an accomplished climber and mountain guide. I turned down an invitation to climb Everest, thinking " No way I'm going up there with all those clowns."

Wilbur said...

For the amateurs, it's just another version of "Hey, hold my beer and watch this!".

Chuck said...

So somebody beat me to "the Darwin awards" reference.

It seems so long ago; that brief shining moment when I read about 1995 Darwin Award winner, "the JATO car." And for a time, was allowed to believe that it could have been true. I don't know how long it was, before I learned it was a hoax.

I think it was the best fiction writing of the 1990's. Period.

I never much cared about Santa Claus and I don't know how, or when, or why I learned that there was no Santa Claus. Didn't bother me. I was always on to the Tooth Fairy so that was all in good fun. The Easter Bunny was just weird. Again, didn't care.

But I was crushed, as a fully-grown adult and licensed practicing attorney, when I found out that the JATO car was a myth.

Yancey Ward said...

Not too hard to figure out what happened here- the driver was too busy watching everything but the road ahead.

rhhardin said...

That's why you should storm chase in airplanes. There's another dimension to miss in.

rhhardin said...

One of the flaws of the air traffic system is restricting controlled planes to corridors, where a mistake in altitude results in a collision.

Let them wander all over freely and the collision odds go way down.

I never cruised at a round-number altitude.

Virgil Hilts said...

My all time favorite tornado video (from North Dakota). These guys sound exactly like my friends from Nebraska would have when faced with a 20% chance of imminent death. Absolute joy, hilarity and amazement. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zPgl_1JzTg
This is what I loved most about the midwest.

stever said...

Amateur storm chasers hoping to get attention for a You Tube video. What could go wrong?

Michael K said...

These guys were not amateurs. They worked for the Weather Channel. My wife watches it all the time.

" the driver was too busy watching everything but the road ahead."

He should have been watching the roads to the side. It was a T Bone collision.

Freeman Hunt said...

One of the flaws of the air traffic system is restricting controlled planes to corridors, where a mistake in altitude results in a collision.

Let them wander all over freely and the collision odds go way down.


Glad to see a comment on this. It's something I've wondered about.

roadgeek said...

I know Dickens County and the area around Spur. Lonely country. Wonder how long it was before the wreck was even discovered?

Lem said...

Reminiscent of the scene in Twister (1996) when the two chasing parties almost collide when one came plowing through a corn field and onto the road the other chasing party was traveling on.

It made it seem like a wild western.

The Godfather said...

@Chuck: I thought the best part of the JATO car story was that when the car hit 500 mph, the guy put on the brakes.

BN said...

Oh, hell, i just came here lookin' for the Guild of Cannibals.

Anybody seen 'em?

BN said...

"When I was much younger I had a very skeezy friend."

Was it the Guild perchance? Tell him I'm looking for him.

"Let them wander all over freely..."

Shit, i'll never find him now.

Rusty said...

The average sedan will self destruct long before it reaches 500 mph. That should have been the first clue.

And

Stupid people die in stupid ways. Don't be stupid.