Listen, I made a joke on the Twitter about TV weather reporters.
GOV’T: Everybody evacuate before this hurricane kills you. No joke.
376 TV WEATHER REPORTERS: Yo, we got these sweet windbreakers, so we’re hitting the beach for 72 straight hours of live shots. pic.twitter.com/UHfF8kTXLa
— Guy (@speechwriterguy) September 14, 2018
Except there’s more to it than a joke. These folks really are brave, and no, those windbreakers do not make them invincible.
As a former journalist, I get what they’re doing. We used to have the police scanner on all day and night in the newsroom, and if you heard about a flood, fire, car crash, murder or other bit of mayhem, it was a race to see who could grab their camera and notebook to get out the door first.
When everybody else heads away from danger, reporters walk right up and say hi.
Weather reporters don’t get much respect. It’s seen as an entry-level job, with veterans and hotshots doing “real news.”
So noobs at a TV station are usually the ones who have to get up at oh-dark-thirty to drive into the mountains and do a live shot at 6 a.m. that yes, it’s snowing, as you can see. Then another live shot at 6:30, 7:30, noon, and so forth. The same shot. The same news.
TV weather reporters wade into the floodwaters and storm surges.
And yes, they hit the beaches and try to remain upright when hurricanes roll in with 100+ mph winds.
It’s a tough job.
We should appreciate them more. These folks literally risk their lives trying to educate us and hopefully save some lives. Because if they’re showing up with a brave camera crew, it’s a clear sign that we really should get out of town.