Local

Local storm chasers film deadly twister

Monday, May 12, 2008

A group of storm chasers from the Chicago area was in Oklahoma when those deadly tornados hit over the weekend.

Twenty-two people were killed when the tornados swept through Missouri and Oklahoma.

One video was shot just minutes after a killer tornado struck Picher, Oklahoma. The tornado chasing group that shot the video is based in Carpentersville, Ill. They were in position Saturday to intercept the powerful twister.

While the goal of the chasers is to view a tornado, the destruction is something they never want to see.

"It is nice when you're on storms and they're out in the middle of nowhere and going through farm fields and stuff like that. But it always, there's a bitterness to it when you get into a town like this and into a more populated area," said Mark Lingl, Weather Gods. Inc.

Mark Lingl uses his vacation time from his regular job to lead two nine-day chases. Clients sign up from all over the world to go on one of the tornado chases.

"They fly in from Australia, one from Maryland, a lady from North Carolina and then another gentleman from Florida," said Lingl.

The cost of these trips is slightly more than $2,000 and includes everything but food.

The vehicle is a standard 12-person van but is equipped with special weather instrumentation to track potentially tornadic storms.

"I got computers, PDA, also lightning detectors and just a variety of equipment," said Lingl.

While you may think the risks of tornado chasing are obvious, the real dangers are not from the actual twisters.

"Tornadoes aren't the scary thing. It is the large hail and high winds, get hit with a 190 miles an hour crosswind in a van or car, it gets pretty nerve wracking," said Lingl.

Lingl says that he has seen at least a funnel cloud on each chase he has been on for the last 20 years.

Visit: http://weathergodsinc.com/

(Copyright ©2014 WLS-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

Get more Local »


Tags:
local, phil schwarz
blog comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement