When others fled, they drove closer to the spinning winds.
"It can become unsafe for all involved", said Sgt. John Gonzalez of the Texas Department of Public Safety.
(AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File) This March 2017 photo from video provided by KSPR in Springfield, Mo., shows storm chaser Kelley Williamson, of Cassville, Mo. Mr Yarnall was a passenger in the Suburban. Corbin Lee Jaeger was the driver of a Jeep that was struck by a Suburban on Tuesday at a rural crossroads in West Texas. While he was pursuing the same tornado, it's unclear whether he was with the two men. "Yes, more chasers will die in tornadoes (or be killed in vehicle crashes while chasing)". Yarnall and Jaeger were wearing their seat belts.
Fellow storm chaser and photographer Billy Wade, 25 of Washburn, Missouri, said he knew all three men involved in the crash, but said Williamson and Yarnall were some of his best friends.
"Kelley and Randy were beloved members of the weather community", The Weather Channel said in a statement Tuesday afternoon.
The storms led to almost 70 flight cancellations at airports in Houston as of 4 p.m. CST (2100 GMT), tracking service FlightAware.com reported. "We're just starting the storm season and this is something we'll continue to deal with", said Faulkner. "You got to be a little fearless to do that", he said of Williamson. The plains are not overrun by storm-chasing caravans every spring.
The Department of Public Safety reported that 57-year-old Kelley Williamson was driving his black suburban with 55-year-old Randall Yarnell north on FM 1081 at about 3:30 Tuesday afternoon. She was shaken up, but alive, Meltzer said.
In the early days of storm research, forecasters had no lead time to warn people that a tornado was approaching.
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"People ask what we do, well, we track weather, tornadoes for the Weather Channel you know", Williamson said.
"I'm going to go chasing in remembrance of them now and for the rest of the year", he said. "People don't respect flooding like they should".
His last Instagram post Tuesday said, "Waiting for them storms!"
"I'm just in disbelief; I just can't believe this happened", says Tammy Massey, a server at Sunrise Family Restaurant who served both men many times.
To protect against lightening, get inside an enclosed structure and stay away from windows, electrical devices and plumbing, Skow said. "We had plans for him to visit so I could teach him some photography skills".
Wade adds that Jaeger was extremely intelligent.
Authorities did not mention whether stormy conditions played a role, but one official confirmed to CNN that the storm chasers were following a tornado through Dickens County.