I spend the vast majority of my time tracking storms from inside a studio while staring at a multitude of radar screens.
I look at numerous radar sources and parameters from two dimensional to three dimensional. I study every pixel of the radar screen in an effort to understand everything the storm is doing and what it may be capable of doing in order to share that information with our viewers to help them stay safe.
When I or one of the members of the First Alert Weather Team is on the air tracking severe storms, that means that there is the potential for harm or damage to property. We convey every aspect of a storm from what it's doing to where it is and where it's going.
As damaging and even deadly as a storm can be, there is also the beauty of the complexity of a storm not just meteorologically but visually. It's the visual aspect that I often miss. I have cameras at various locations around the Mid-South but they still don't convey the real beauty of a storm.
Fortunately, with the rise of social media, we now have viewers share their storm pictures with us and it's usually after the storms have passed that I get the opportunity to see a picture of a storm that I was tracking on radar. As scary as many of the images are, there is also a real beauty to see.
I spent much of the day Friday tracking the remnants of Cindy as it moved through the Mid-South and then later in the day another storm system that moved into the area bringing heavy rain, wind, and lightning.
At the end of the day, I went to my Twitter and Facebook page to see if anyone had shared a photo that may confirm what I had spent the day tracking on radar, and sure enough, there were some great photos shared by people following me.
Here are three that captured the real beauty of the afternoon storms and made me take a moment to be thankful that as lovely yet ominous as those storms looked that no one was injured and that there was no serious damage.
To Shawn Turner, Kris Bell, and Michael Donnell, thank you for taking a moment to share your photos with me and allow me to observe the true beauty in nature.