The weather that gets the most attention is weather disasters. When a weather disaster strikes, people flood onto websites and news channels to get the latest information. Many weather documentaries and news stories focus on weather disasters. For example, many of the high profile shows on the Weather Channel deal with weather disasters. Examples of weather disasters are hurricane landfalls, tornado outbreaks, severe thunderstorm outbreaks, crippling ice storms, river floods, droughts, and global climate change. A meteorologist and reporter will often get a much higher visibility during these type of events. Let us look at these various weather disasters and what type of news exposure comes with each.

Landfalling Hurricanes: We know this one well. Reporters and meteorologists flock to the coast in preparation for a significant landfalling hurricane. The sights of destruction is the worst in weather reporting due to how widespread the damage can be and how extreme it can be. Is it wild to live along the coast? It can be for the unlucky one that gets slammed by a major hurricane and are not prepared. Before living along the coast in a hurricane prone area make sure you have a disaster plan, insurance and an evacuation plan. Many weather documentaries have focused on the awesome destructive power of landfalling hurricanes. Reporters and meteorologists must balance between seeing the damage and unsettling the victims of these life altering disasters. It is critical to inform those on the coast of the critical preparations they need to take.

Tornado Outbreaks: Super tornadoes can produce incredible damage. The damage is not as widespread as with a major hurricane but where the tornado hits the damage is heartbreaking. Each decade tornado chasing seems to get more popular. The Great Plains are loaded down with storm chasers in the higher risk areas for tornadoes. There are chase companies, student chasers, professional chasers, university chasers, hobby chasers, and even tanks that are out there ready to witness one of natures most awe inspiring but destructive events. The cameras and video cameras are all ready at the wait. The goal is to capture that moment, that funnel, that touchdowning tornado. Many weather documentaries on television deal with tornadoes. All the attention on tornadoes is good in a way in that it helps the public become informed on the proper tornado preparation and what to do in a tornado warning. There can not be enough education about tornadoes since they take lives and cause destruction. The wind can be a powerful force.

Severe Thunderstorm Outbreaks: Threats from severe storms are high winds, hail and tornadoes. Heavy rain and lightning are additional threats. Severe weather outbreaks can make the news especially if the damage is widespread. Hail can do significant damage to crops, roofs, and automobiles. High wind events can do as much damage as weak tornadoes. Heavy rain can cause flash flooding. Flash flooding makes for dramatic news when video of rescue and recovery events are shown. Often people will get trapped in a car during flash flooding. Lightning, when it strikes too close, can damage electrical equipment, cause fires and damage structures. Severe thunderstorms can make dramatic storm footage. Towering cumulonimbus clouds, approaching squall line, dark clouds, wall clouds and sheets of falling rain come to mind.

Crippling Ice Storms: Ice storms can bring great amounts of damage and bring the local economy of communities to a stand still. The most paralyzing winter weather event is freezing rain because it can easily bring down trees and power lines and turn the ground into a skating rink. It is no fun when the power goes out and ice storms can do it due to the weight of the ice on power lines. Ice storms disrupt transportation, keep many people at home and away from work, damage sensitive outside equipment, strip trees and branches, increase flight delays and cause an economic set back for communities that are hit. Ice storms often don't make the national news like tornadoes and hurricanes but the local news coverage is intense. Legendary ice storms can be remembered for years into the future.

River Floods: Many towns and communities are located near the banks of river systems. When a flood occurs these river plains are inundated with water and sediment. This is good for resupplying nutrients to the soil but is a disaster for homes and buildings in the flood plain. Living in a flood plain is a huge risk. Eventually the flood always comes. It is just a matter of time. Big river floods such as along the Mississippi River can be high profile news events due to the number of homes and communities that are affected. Images of laying out sandbags to hold back the rising waters comes to mind. In these situation the weather forecast is monitored each day. In this type of weather pattern, rain events can keep repeating. The same areas keep getting rain and the river level continues to rise. This type of news story can build up over days and weeks. Be very cautious about living in the flood plain and make sure to have flood insurance if you do.

Droughts: With the world population increase, stress on the environment, stress on water resources, and global climate change the droughts witnessed have been severe and impacted many people. Droughts often do not make news like tornadoes and hurricanes since they are longer term events and the video is often not as dramatic as tornado and hurricane damage footage. However, droughts are the primary cause of environmental damage and death in the world. Agriculture suffers extreme damage from droughts. With the growing population expect a great emphasis on reducing the damage from drought. Irrigation practices, types of crops grown, water conservation, and adjusting to climate change are all important issues we face now and in the future. A significant portion of world aid will involve dealing with crippling drought.

Global Climate Change: The hot topic that comes up in documentary and weather shows is global climate change. A phrase that is typically given is "global warming". Humans have the ability to influence the climate through land management practices, pollution put into the atmosphere and the influence from a rapidly growing and urbanizing world population. The most obvious influences of global climate change are the retreat of glaciers and polar ice, rising sea level, increased frequency of droughts and floods, weather that is more frequently extreme and a warming climate (especially at higher latitudes). Look for this issue to remain a hot topic well into the future.