The Vortex2 Fiasco

For the past three weeks, a team of meteorologists and storm chasers has been zigzagging across the Great Plains in pursuit of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes; with 2 days to go in May, they've hardly come close to a thunderstorm and haven't seen a single tornado. Christened "Vortex2," the project was designed to study the formation and dynamics of these dangerous storms, with the goal of improving forecasts in the future.

This expensive project, while established to collect valuable scientific information, was, unfortunately, wed to entertainment programming on the Weather Channel. This dual commitment has kept much of the team together, driving long distances in a futile attempt to intercept the storms. Had the project been purely scientific, I imagine that various sub-teams would have been stationed across the Plains, at various latitudes; since the forecasting of these storms remains far from accurate, the sub-teams would have been within much shorter range, allowing them to position their equipment when essential conditions developed.

Of course, bad luck with regional weather patterns has been part of their problem, forcing the media participants to report on daily routines, minor injuries, historical markers, geographic scenery and other non-weather stories. My recommendation: position the team in Weld County, Colorado, during the month of June; plenty of supercell storms are almost guaranteed to pass nearby!