Not even news anchors are exempt from the whims of local weather.
That much was demonstrated Sunday afternoon when Kansas-based news anchors were forced to evacuate during a live broadcast after a tornado touched down near the studio in downtown Wichita.
J.D. Rudd, a meteorologist for NBC affiliate KSN, was preparing to give an update on the storm when he appeared to be motioned off camera during the live broadcast. In the video footage, as Rudd rushes off-screen, another voice (unseen) explains that the time has finally come for everyone in the news station to seek shelter.
“It appears that it is time for all of us to get to shelter,” the man said in the video. “Get to shelter right now! Everybody ... let’s go!”
According to NBC News, the local station employees, who had provided live coverage of the storm for nearly two hours before the evacuation, left the studio around 4:15 p.m. Some took cover in the building's basement.
Fortunately, the tornado lifted shortly after it arrived at KSN's doorstep and left the building largely undamaged.
Tweeting storm updates throughout the day, Rudd later addressed the evacuation on Twitter.
As feared, it turned into an "interesting" day. But I am glad no extreme damage occurred today. Things got too close for my liking.
— JD Rudd (@jdrudd) May 20, 2013
The tornado that ripped through downtown Wichita was one of several to rock the midwest over the weekend. Described by the National Weather Service as "large, violent and extremely dangerous," the twister caused some minor damage to properties near the city; however, no injuries were reported.
“When you live in Kansas, that’s just one of those things that’s going to happen,” Wichita resident Chuck Walton told KSN.
While the city may have gotten off relatively scot-free this time, other cities in the region did not fare as well. At least two people have been confirmed dead, both of whom were killed near Shawnee, Okla., according to the Associated Press. The National Weather Service predicts that severe weather will continue to batter the area through Monday afternoon and evening.
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