TODAY

TODAY   |  May 20, 2013

Storm chasers get close to Okla. tornadoes

The Weather Channel’s Jim Cantore chased the tornadoes that tore through the Midwest over the weekend, capturing stunning images of the funnel clouds.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> very much. the weather channel 's jim cantore has been tracking the worst of the storms. jim, good morning to you. you were chasing some of the storms yesterday. what was it like on the ground?

>> good morning, matt, we punched through the first storm had a track possibly 20 miles long. we went through that thing three times and every time we went through it, it got stronger and stronger. we didn't go through with an automobile, we went through it with a specially designed automobile that weighs about 10,000 pounds and it can go down to the ground if it has to, it has armor on the outside so it can take the debris. it's basically meant to go through a tornado. you see us going through it the first time and only got bigger and bigger and finally met debris on the road where we couldn't go any further and move south to chase the shawnee cell. what we learned along the way is people want reassurance that a tornado is on the ground and through obviously helicopters and vehicles we have yesterday with streaming video they can see that and tend to take tornado warnings more serious.

>> and al and janet have talked to us about the damage left in the wake of these tornadoes and talk about warnings, because you talk about people needing at assurance they know where this is. the weather people have been talking about these storms for the better part of six, seven days. right, jim?

>> reporter: yes, we saw this one coming a long time ago but i'm telling you through research especially after the tuscaloosa tornado, 27 april , 2011 , they need to be reassured, prove it to me, if you're going to ask me to uproot my entire life and change what i'm doing, prove it to us. through television and technology we can show you the pictures. when you see monsters like these coming at your town you're going to take cover and luckily as al mentioned only one person lost their life. it's sad but it could have been a lot worse.

>> jim cantore in oklahoma as well, thank you very much.