How do I watch the live stream?
Simply click on the live streaming menu on the home page and the player will start automatically.
Do you respond to messages in the TVN chat or on Facebook?
I really enjoy talking with people in the TVN chatroom. Many of the people in there are now my friends on facebook. When driving to and from chases or waiting for storms to fire I spend a lot of time chatting. However, when the action really gets going I’m very limited, particularly when I’m by myself. Driving in severe weather, running radar, taking video and making what can be life or death decisions is as much as I can handle. During these times I’m not very likely to be chatting . Also during these times I ask that you not send me instant messages or phone calls.
What kind of car do drive?
Don’t laugh, my main chase vehicle is a 2012 Prius. It gets great gas mileage, it’s very comfortable, it’s extremely reliable and it’s the best vehicle I’ve ever owned. That poor car has chased tornadoes down mud roads at night, Been pelted with baseball sized hail, Driven through water that came half way up the door, pulled a 4wd jeep out of the median during an ice storm and been hit by the largest tornado in history. It’s a machine.
Have you ever been hit by a tornado?
Yes, unfortunately I was hit by the El Reno EF-5. I was very fortunate as we lost several chasers in that storm. I’ve been a few other situations that were, um, less than ideal but that is the one that could have gone a completely different way. To this day I contribute our safety to the aerodynamics of the Prius. I put the nose of the car into the wind and just kept turning the car slightly as the wind changed. If the winds from that tornado had hit the side of the car it would have been deadly.
How long have you been chasing storms?
Almost 20 years now.
Are you a meteorologist?
No. I am completely self taught but can hold my own when it comes to forecasting weather. I do all of my own forecasts and pick my own targets.
Do you chase for a living?
No, chasing doesn’t pay well if it pays at all. I’ve made good money on some chases, make enough to pay for the chases sometimes but most of the time I’m out of pocket more than I make.
How dangerous is chasing?
It can be very dangerous but my biggest fear is getting hit by a drunk driver or one of the millions of horrible drivers while driving all around the country.
How can I make a donation?
I have a donation menu on the home page or just click here.
What is your favorite thing to chase?
That is such a tough question. I’d rather incredible structure than see a brief tornado. My favorite used to be hurricanes but I got burned out in the 2000’s when they were slamming the coasts relentlessly but now it’s been so long I look forward to chasing the next one. I enjoy blizzards and love a real good tornado setup but they can be extremely stressful and take a lot of me when they hit in populated areas.
Do you do search and rescue?
Honestly, I try to avoid it. If I’m first on scene there is no hesitation but I have limited training and supplies so if I feel like I can’t help the last thing I want to do is get in the way of those who can. Many times though, I am the first on scene. I’ve dug through homes to get people out, I’ve helped people injured, given people shelter in my car in driving rains, helped people find pets, cleared trees off of roads, etc but I feel more helpful by working with first responders, NWS and EMA managers to give ground reports on areas hit the hardest.
What are some notable tornadoes you have been on?
Smithville Ef-5, El Reno EF-5, Louisville Ef-4, Holly Springs EF-4, Canton Lake EF-3, Columbia EF-3 were my most memorable. I chased the Yazoo City EF-4 and Tuscaloosa/Birmingham EF-4 but was cut off by damage numerous times before I could get very close. I was really close to the first El Reno EF-5 as it neared Guthrie, Ok but it was rain wrapped and I was within a half mile of a very intense tornado and couldn’t see so I stopped.
Who have you sold videos to?
ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, FNC, CNN, TWC, WN, BBC, Discovery and many of their affiliates.
Do you work for someone when chasing?
I don’t work for anyone but I do all my brokering through Brett Adair with Live Storms Media.
What areas of the country are your favorite to chase?
I love Kansas, northern Illinois is very underrated, the Ms/Ar delta is great chase terrain and I love the Texas caprock. My least favorite is Southern Arkansas.