I watched tornado coverage yesterday between newscasts. MSNBC took live coverage directly from KFOR in Oklahoma City. Mike Morgan, KFOR’s long time meteorologist was on-the-air.
I had never seen Mike Morgan before. I have no idea if I’d like his day-to-day on-air style. Yesterday he was commanding the TV station like a general and saving lives.
He was the lone on-air voice of their coverage, but he was not alone. KFOR had a number of crews in the field who could go live by phone or with video. In the studio Morgan had another meteorologist or producer who was running the gear.
That’s the secret sauce right there! If you have the right person, one voice is what you should strive for. Morgan was calling the shots for all to hear. Having multiple meteorologists in front of a camera tends to unfocus the coverage. There’s often competition for the choicest data. That doesn’t serve the viewers.
It’s exhausting work. As the coverage rolled on Morgan looked spent. Severe weather coverage is a marathon, not a sprint.
If you’re interested in some geeky meteo minutiae from yesterday here’s a technical write-up on a small weather station that happened to be in a tornado’s direct path!
Just before I began writing this I saw a semi-related Facebook post from my friend Aaron Barnhart. He’s the TV writer at the Kansas City Star.
As of 1130 when was the storm to hit Mission Wds? WDAF: 1135. KCTV: 1159. KMBC: 1153. KSHB: 1235 (?!) #tornadoalleylive
I have used display equipment similar to what Aaron’s talking about. We have that ability at FoxCT (though I’ve not used it yet). It’s easy for me to see how that discrepancy can happen because you’re doing things freehand in a live situation. Now I have to figure out how to make it never happen to me!
2 thoughts on “Oklahoma’s Tornados”
Yikes! A Tornado is something I never want to encounter. Husband’s family is in Shawnee OK and a niece in St. Louis MO, friends in ARK, friend’s son in Alabama when that one hit! Too much – too scary.
That was amazing coverage on KFOR. I was surprised that they had a chopper up following the tornado.