Storm chasing has become more controversial lately, as I indicated in a recent post. Here’s a link to another article on the topic:
Here’s one of the points the author makes:
1) Storm chasers are not saving lives. In fact, storm chasers sometimes put themselves at risk and further burden local emergency managers should they require assistance. Chasers call this phenomenon “chaser convergence,” and it sometimes crowds rural and remote roadways to the point that emergency vehicles can no longer pass.
I think “Slate” author Eric Holthaus over generalizes a bit when he writes, “Storm chasers are not saving lives.”
Some chasers are true scientists who conduct research that might someday save lives by enabling improved forecasts, for example. And some chasers act as both chasers and SKYWARN storm spotters when in the field — in other words, these chasers report the severe weather they see to the nearest National Weather Service office.
Chasers who do bona fide research and those who make reports to the NWS might be saving lives, either in the long term or short term. On the other hand, Holthaus might be correct, if he refers to the remainder of chasers, who neither do true research nor call in reports.
What do you think? Add your comments to this post.