TWC Team Embedded within VORTEX2 Will Provide Live Footage, Streaming Online Video, Twitter Updates
ATLANTA (May 5, 2009) - The Weather Channel (TWC) will bring viewers closer to tornadoes than ever before starting May 10. Extensive TWC coverage of VORTEX2, a multi-agency field program to investigate tornadoes across the U.S. Great Plains, will be seen on air, online and on mobile from May 10-June 13. TWC meteorologist Mike Bettes will help viewers experience the power of weather and the excitement scientists feel when tracking a tornado. For the first time ever, TWC will include live transmissions from moving vehicles as they track storms, live streaming video online and real-time blog and Twitter updates at www.weather.com.
The Weather Channel team traveling with the VORTEX2 group will be led by Bettes, co-host of Weather Center on TWC. Bettes and three digital journalists will report on the project, offering viewers new segments about tornadoes, live reports on the formulation and movement of tornadoes as they occur, and behind-the-scenes stories about the team of scientists and their technology. Bettes is no stranger to tornadoes or the damage they create, having won a 2001 Emmy Award for a series on tornado chasing in the plains.
"Vortex coverage on The Weather Channel will take viewers on a quest with the world's foremost experts to intercept and understand the power of tornadoes," said Geoffrey Darby, EVP of programming at The Weather Channel. "This real-time, insider's look at tracking tornadoes will demonstrate the power of nature and the passion of those who study it."
Extensive multi-platform coverage by The Weather Channel includes:
- Tornado action as it happens - Live updates of current tornadic activity will show in-the-field video from real tornado trackers as tornadoes occur
- Expert analysis - Renowned TWC Tornado Expert Dr. Greg Forbes will give live in-studio analysis from a special VORTEX2 HD set
- Tornado chasing blogs - Daily online blog and video blog entries from Mike Bettes and the TWC tornado "hunting" team at www.weather.com
- Live Twitter updates - Mike Bettes will give the most up-to-date information in real time. Follow him at twitter.com/tornadohunt
- Streaming video and online content - Live streaming video will be available at www.weather.com each day from noon-2 p.m. ET and during active weather. Also online will be a video gallery, photo slide shows, behind-the-scenes information and a chance to interact with Mike Bettes
- Via mobile phone - A mobile mini site about tornadoes with a video gallery, blogs photos, behind-the-scenes information and more available from mobile devices at www.weather.com
VORTEX2 (Verification of the Origin of Rotation in Tornadoes Experiment 2) is the largest field experiment in history to explore tornadoes. The VORTEX2 project is designed to study tornadoes as they've never been seen before to better understand how, when and why tornadoes form and to help improve alert skill. The project is made up of nearly 100 scientists, 40 research vehicles and students from sixteen different universities and academic organizations in the United States, Canada and Australia. A $10.5 million project, VORTEX2 is funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
For more details about The Weather Channel coverage of the VORTEX2 project, please visit www.weather.com.
About The Weather Channel Companies
The Weather Channel companies (TWCC) are made up of The Weather Channel® television network, The Weather Channel digital properties, and WSI. The Weather Channel is based in Atlanta and is seen in more than 100 million U.S. households. TWCC also operates Weatherscan®, a 24-hour all-local weather network; The Weather Channel Radio Network; and The Weather Channel HD. The most popular source of weather news and information, TWCC properties reach 60 million monthly Web consumers (weather.com and Desktop) and 32 million monthly mobile users (mobile Web and applications) and offers the second most popular mobile app on all smartphones. WSI, headquartered in Andover, MA, primarily provides business-to-business weather services, particularly for the media, aviation, marine and energy sectors. TWCC is owned by a consortium made up of NBC Universal and the private equity firms The Blackstone Group and Bain Capital. For more information, visit www.weather.com/press.