UI meteorologist to speak at safety event

UI meteorologist to speak at safety event

URBANA — University of Illinois meteorologist Jeffrey Frame, who takes students to the Great Plains each spring to observe tornadoes and thunderstorms, will speak at a free weather-safety event at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Beckman Institute auditorium, 405 N. Mathews Ave., U.

He will share his knowledge, photographs and videos during "Becoming Weather Aware: Severe Storm Preparedness with Meteorologist Dr. Jeffrey Frame," sponsored by Illinois Public Media, also known as WILL.

Frame's presentation will cover thunderstorm basics, lightning, flash floods, high winds, hail, tornadoes and safety during severe weather. He'll also answer questions from the audience.

Last spring, Frame and his UI students were nearby when three storm chasers died while chasing a tornado in Oklahoma.

"We saw the tornado from the back — where we were safe," he said.

Frame follows tornadoes to gather scientific data with the Doppler on Wheels radar, most recently as a part of VORTEX2 in 2009 and 2010.

VORTEX2 is the largest and most ambitious effort to understand tornadoes, with more than 100 scientists and 40 science and support vehicles participating.

"I was the head navigator," Frame said. "I sat in the front seat of a large mobile Doppler radar truck, forecasting storms and making sure we were safe."

The scientists in the project gathered data to try to understand why some thunderstorms produce tornadoes and some don't, Frame said.

Illinois Public Media is co-sponsoring the free Frame event with the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology; the UI School of Earth, Society and the Environment; and the UI Department of Atmospheric Sciences.

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