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Storm Tracker Business Idea

If you love weather, you may have wondered about how to become a storm tracker. Watching nature’s fury, experiencing danger, and feeling the thrill of the chase combine to create an adventure like no other.

Typically started as a hobby, some storm tracking enthusiasts have turned their hobby into a successful business. Storm tracking vacations and tours are now offered by companies where participants join storm tracking teams in the chase. Extremely popular, a storm chasing business can turn a well-loved hobby into a moneymaking enterprise.

How To Become A Storm Tracker – Getting Started

Learning how to become a storm tracker involves gathering as much knowledge about storms and weather as possible. Storm chasing is an exciting as well as dangerous hobby. The more you know about meteorology, the science of weather, the more informed and safer your storm tracking decisions will be.

The National Weather Service (NWS) sponsors the SKYWARN program that trains and utilizes volunteer weather spotters. The SKYWARN program teaches participants the fundamentals of storm development, signs of impending severity, and severe weather safety. Classes are free and periodically held in regions throughout the country. Attending the SKYWARN program is an informative and fun way to learn about weather.

A more hands-on approach to learning how to storm track is by working with an experienced storm tracker. Working with someone who has tracked storms for some time will give you firsthand knowledge of how to use the tracking equipment and about successful storm chasing methods.

Most storm trackers use the following equipment:

  • GPS navigation equipped with weather tracking
  • Communication tools, such as HAM radio
  • Video and still cameras
  • Detailed regional maps

In addition to storm tracking equipment, a reliable vehicle is required. Four-wheel drive vehicles are optimum because of their superior maneuverability in all types of weather. Keep in mind, too, that there should be enough room for your tracking gear, protective clothing, safety equipment, and emergency food and supplies.

Storm Tracking Business Success

If your ultimate goal in learning how to become a storm tracker is to make money, you must first become an experienced tracker yourself. If you choose to offer storm chasing tours, keep in mind that you will be responsible for the safety of the participants. In addition, the participants will expect to see storms. You don’t have the power to create storms yourself, but your knowledge about weather conditions and storm development will help you take customers to the most likely storm locations.

When setting your tour package prices, factor in the cost of fuel, insurance coverage, and supplies. Obtain a business license from your local business office. Some states require that you get a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) in order to legally transport customers. Contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles for more information.

The tour van should be comfortable, safe, and contain an emergency water supply, a first-aid kit, and basic toolkit.

A professional-looking web site will be required in order for you to attract customers from all over the world. Enhance the site with video and photos of storms and tornadoes that you have intercepted.

Expanding Your Operations

Learning how to become a storm tracker and leading tours on storm chases, by its very nature, is a seasonal occupation. Below are some ideas that may bring in additional revenue:

  • Add more storm chasing teams
  • Sell storm and tornado photos
  • Add different types of tours, such as local interest tours
  • Teach weather-related classes

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