Almost everyone is fascinated by the awesome power of tornadoes and hurricanes. But some scientists and thrill-seekers will do everything possible to experience the “birth” of a tornado, or to look directly into the eye of a hurricane.
In this action-packed program, filmmaker Udo Maurer accompanies tornado hunters as they stalk their prey across the great plains of America’s Midwest. With laptop computers and video cameras at their disposal, these adventurers race after storm clouds for weeks on end while their scientist colleagues, equipped with the latest in radar technology, attempt to record the first twisting clouds as they develop into one of the most powerful forces in the world.
Maurer’s documentary team is also on board as crack meteorologists, in specially equipped military aircraft, penetrate to the eye of Hurricane Bertha in an attempt to predict when and where this massive storm will reach landfall. A second camera team remains on land, following the frantic evacuation attempts in North Carolina and witnessing the arrival of the tremendous gale.
Researchers and insurance companies have recorded an increase in the number and strength of these catastrophic storms over the last few years. Many believe this is yet another manifestation of the ominous climate changes brought about by global warming. Maurer’s team also tries to discover why, in recent years, these “killer storms” have become more common and more destructive in Europe. Again, experts warn that it is a result of the “Greenhouse Effect.” Climatologists predict that in the years to come, heavier winter storms can be expected and tornadoes, until now a rarity on the European continent, will become more and more common.