Weather

Three storm chasers killed in Texas collision

KCBD-TV footage from the scene of a multiple fatality accident in West Texas that possibly involved storm chasers.
KCBD-TV footage from the scene of a multiple fatality accident in West Texas that possibly involved storm chasers. KCBD-TV (framegrab)

Three storm chasers were killed Tuesday in a two-vehicle collision in west Texas, authorities say.

The collision happened at about 3:30 p.m., five miles west of Spur, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

A black Suburban was traveling north when the driver ran a stop sign and collided with a Jeep traveling west. Two people were in one vehicle and one in the other. All three died in the collision, the agency said.

The Weather Channel reported that two of those killed were under contract with the cable channel: chase partners Kelley Williamson, 57, and Randy Yarnall, 55.

“Kelley and Randy were beloved members of the weather community,” a statement issued by the channel said Tuesday night. “We are saddened by this loss and our deepest sympathies go out to the families and loved ones of all involved.”

The Texas Department of Public Safety identified the third person killed as Corbin Jaeger, 25. Jaeger’s Twitter account listed his hometown as Phoenix.

The collision occurred in an area not far from where a short-lived tornado touched down.

Shock and speculation quickly rippled across social media as the word spread. Chasers let friends know they were not hurt or were not out on the roads during what the Storm Prediction Center labeled as a moderate risk for severe weather.

A total of 13 tornadoes had been reported in west and northwest Texas by late Tuesday night.

Stan Finger: 316-268-6437, @StanFinger

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