Meteorologist interrupts live TV weather report to call family about tornado warning

Chief meteorologist Doug Kammerer interrupted his weather report on NBC Washington Thursday night to call his family and update them of a nearby tornado warning.

Kammerer was on the air at around 8:45 p.m., making a detailed weather report when the National Weather Service released it warnings.

The path leads “directly through my house,” Kammerer said on the air, cellphone in hand, while standing in front of a weather map showing the storm’s trajectory.

Kammerer then called home and his son answered.

The meteorologist told his son that the family should go down to the basement to be safe.

“I have to warn my children,” Kammerer said after he hung up the phone and broadcast his weather report live again.

Minutes after Kammerer returned to the air, the NWS lifted the tornado warning.

Its meteorologist, James Morrow, works for the NWS headquarters in Silver Spring, which has also been included in the tornado warning.

He watched while Kammerer made the on-air phone call Thursday.

“It’s not easy for stations to decide to get involved, and it’s not easy for meteorologists to ask permission,” Morrow told NPR. “But as a consumer of their fodder, and as a scientist who understands the risks of powerful tornadoes like this one, it was heartening to see this type of coverage for what could have turned into a very serious situation.”

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