Terms that spotter/Media use that bothers me

Apr 10, 2008
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Wisconsin
www.proalert.us
You would think that the media and some spotters
would be educated enough to use correct terminology.

A. I see so many times that a "funnel has touched down".
Folks, if a "condensation funnel" is in contact with the ground
it is a tornado!

B. Tornadoes do not play football, thus they do not touch down.
They spin up. Some debate on this.

C. "Tornado aloft" is a funnel cloud. This one can be a pain
as some tornadoes lift off the ground or "skip".

D. I see debris being tossed around on the ground but do not
see a funnel. Folks, you can not see air, thus the debris spinning
on the ground below a rotating segment of the cell is a tornado.
You do not have to have a "visible" funnel to have a tornado.

E. They say the ongoing tornado is "I think its an F5!"
Really...The NWS should put you on the payroll!

What drives you nuts when you see CNN, TWC or even the
NWS using wrong terminolgy...:eek:

Tim
 

Chris Campbell

E. They say the ongoing tornado is "I think its an F5!"
Really...The NWS should put you on the payroll!
That is the most annoying. Usually it has to do with the size of the tornado -- i.e. a big tornado must be an "F5". There was an F2 a couple years back here in Iowa that was 8/10 of a mile wide if I recall correctly.
 
Feb 9, 2007
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Southern Illinois
www.youtube.com
Pet peeve: spotters reporting hail as "marble sized". Marbles come in different sizes...so I feel actual/estimated measurements would be more appropriate when relaying a report.
I agree. Most NWS offices will preach against this due to the fact marbles come in all shapes and sizes. Actual measurements would be good but I like the coin system when comparing it and then the sport balls like baseball and so on. I try myself to use actual measurements tho.
 
Apr 10, 2008
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www.proalert.us
One I liked is a local Met said "here the radar indicates a wall cloud"?

A. Wasn't a wall cloud to start with.
B. No rotation shown visually or on radar.
C. Was a loan cloud segment.
D. No VIL.
E. Didn't think radar could do that.

or the statement saying:

Doppler radar indicates a thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado....

Then later it says. "tornado will be near blah blah....

Tim
 
Mar 5, 2010
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Here's one I've heard that sent a few spotters scurrying.


"There's one over by....." talking about a cell not a tornado. I think half the spotters out that day about felled off our seats.

locally they blow the sirens for every warn storm. Many spotters in my area seem to think the tornado calls ahead and sets them off.

Just a pet peeve of mine.
 
Mar 5, 2010
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I'm just suggesting that the phase "there's one over in..." Raised alertness levels by several factors. The storm was not even at severe levels at the time. Be specific when reporting. "There's a cell over by..." ,"There's a tornado over in..." are totally different. "There's one" just raises to many questions.
 

Benjamin Rock

Oh here's one.. on a recent chase, a "trained spotter" pulls up next to me and says,"There's a tornado on radar."

I looked at my GR3 and said "I don't see it" Mind you, there were no velocities above a breeze and no hooks at all on the radar where this guy said it was.

They said, "There is a TVS on the radar. Doesn't that mean a tornado?"
I said switch your radar station and see if it is still there.. It disappeared..

The guy actually looked at me and said, "Hey, I guess the tornado lifted huh?"

I just smiled and shook my head..

TVS on radar DOES NOT mean there is a tornado...
 
Apr 10, 2008
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"I'm looking at live radar"

Unless your a Met or working for a company with a large dome sitting
outback somewhere, I doubt that they are actually seeing "live radar".

The other, and it's not something you hear, but something you see.

Fake radar sweeps...It seems the contest is to see just how many
radars, with fake sweep graphics, you can stuff on to a single large map.

I admit, it looks cool, 'til you think, "hey, that's fake!" then ya
kick it to the curb.

Tim
 

Jason Foster

"I'm looking at live radar"
It is live off the feed...which is the point...describing it as opposed to "recorder earlier" or "archived" images. It's a TV thing and I believe the best way to describe the radar image they are showing. The slight delay is nominal in regards to the TV audience. Knowing your audience is key. Around DC they got a good handle on things!
 
Sep 26, 2007
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I hate using tornado on the ground, and I'm sure open for suggestions on how to bridge that gap, on-air, between wall cloud/funnel/strong rotation/could produce and an actual tornado.

I hate that "tornado on the ground" is insanely redundant, but it does serve to drive home the point.
 
Apr 10, 2008
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www.proalert.us
It is live off the feed...which is the point...describing it as opposed to "recorder earlier" or "archived" images. It's a TV thing and I believe the best way to describe the radar image they are showing. The slight delay is nominal in regards to the TV audience. Knowing your audience is key. Around DC they got a good handle on things!
Nah. So if I play a record on the air its live off the feed?

Dont think so...:cool:

Tim
 

Shawn Rutherford

I'm not crazy about NWS Tornado Warnings for "T'Storms capable of producing tornadoes"... so many times that gets used without anything actually showing evidence of that on radar or/nor any actual sightings of said event.

I know it's all in the wording but it's far too often applied when a tornado watch would work just fine.

I'm with you on the "tornado on the ground".... or how about "non-rotating wall cloud"... not sure what's meant by that.

-shawn
 
Oct 10, 2004
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Yesterday, one of the TWC OCMs repeatedly described video that clearly showed a tornado in progress as a "funnel cloud." The lower third super used the same wording. Dr. Greg Forbes needs to go in there and *****-slap some of these people.

Speaking of Forbes, they had the poor guy doing tounge "twisters" when they asked him to analyze a video of the previous day's tornadoes near Dupree, South Dakota. It cut from scene to scene so fast that he didn't have time to describe what was going on with each tornado, so he ended up stuttering out basically the same thing about each one.