How to Become a Storm Chaser (Part II)

Become a storm chaser for the enjoyment and not for the money.

If you want to work as a storm chaser for your profession, it’s vital to know that most folks in this vocation don’t make a lot of money. Some folks do become a storm chaser full time, they sell video recordings and photos to media agencies to make their income. They have to put in a lot of what they make into equipment and travel costs.

If there aren’t any storms, they don’t make any money. The average salary for this sort of storm chaser is $18,000 annually. Storm chasers usually support themselves with a second job or will only work as a storm chaser during the storm seasons.

Other storm chasers are really meteorologists who chase storms as a part of a research project or as a part of a bigger job description. For example, they may be a college instructor or work for the weather service or spend a couple of months a year chasing storms and collecting data. To be a meteorologist, you will need to have a bachelor’s degree in science as well as a postgraduate degree in meteorology.
Storm Chaser Job Description

When you become a storm chaser, you will be looking for severe weather patterns. Typically, you will begin with a report that severe conditions are expected in a certain area. Most often with a crew and specialized equipment, you’ll go out to the site and attempt to reach the storm. This involves predicting its behavior and direction.

At the site of the storm, there are many things a storm chaser may do. They might set up meteorological equipment to take different readings and data. They may take video and photographs of the storm. They will usually report to authorities via radio the severity and direction of the storm from the ground, so as any due warnings can be given.

How to Become a Storm Chaser (Part I)

Being a storm chaser is exciting but it has more than it’s fair share of risks.

A storm chaser is a meteorological researcher who works on the field, very much in the center of all the action. When you are a storm chaser, you will travel the nation looking for storms and reporting their activity to weather authorities. The information collected by storm chasers helps weather bureaus to give correct forecasts and warnings. Also, storm chasers do research to improve weather forecasting and future storm detection.

There are many storm chasers out there that do this work as a hobby and don’t get paid for their findings. Others are paid researchers and scientists who complete fieldwork and will later create reports and publish their research.
Storm chasing has become very popular, so much so that you can practically go on a tour to learn about how this process works. You just have to remember that storm chasing isn’t for everyone. It might look good on camera, but it is scary and unpredictable. So take that into consideration before leaping into the chase.
Education Requirements to Become a Storm Chaser

If you want to become a storm chaser for a hobby, get in touch with your local television station or the national weather service to find out more information about a short course called SkyWarn. This will teach you all the fundamentals about storm watching, like how to predict storm activity, how to measure statistics, as well as how to keep yourself safe. Learning how to use a radio is also critical.

If you’re looking for really exciting work that will get your blood pumping, then you may want to become a storm chaser. There aren’t many paid opportunities in this field. Most are self-employed, so it is definitely an industry you want to get into for the love of the chase and not for the pay.