Meteorologist says she got DEATH THREATS for interrupting the final round of The Masters to issue tornado warnings
- Ella Dorsey, a meteorologist at CBS46 at Atlanta said she received death threats for interrupting the Masters golf tournament
- Dorsey was focused on tornado watches around Georgia while Tiger Woods was about to make his big comeback at the Masters
- ‘To everyone sending me death threats right now: you wouldn’t be saying a damn thing if a tornado was ravaging your home this afternoon,’ she tweeted
- The channel even split the screen so people could see the golf but hear weather
- Woods ended up winning the Masters before the storms rolled into Augusta
A weather forecaster ended up receiving death threats after she interrupted The Masters on CBS to issue tornado warnings.
The unscheduled weather report came as Tiger Woods was about to make sporting history by completing one of the greatest comebacks of all time by winning his fifth green jacket in the tournament.
But for Ella Dorsey, a meteorologist for CBS46 based in Atlanta, the safety of her viewers was more important than a game of golf.
Ella Dorsey, a meteorologist at CBS46 at Atlanta said she received death threats for interrupting the Masters golf tournament to report tornado warnings
‘To everyone sending me death threats right now: you wouldn’t be saying a damn thing if a tornado was ravaging your home this afternoon,’ she tweeted
CBS46 cut away from the golf to give a weather forecast about possible tornadoes in the area. The screen was split so the golf could still be viewed, but the commentary was cut
Other loyal fans of the tournament were irritated when the weather cut into the golf
Dorsey was focused on tornado watches around Georgia while Tiger Woods was about to make his big comeback at the Masters
‘To everyone sending me death threats right now: you wouldn’t be saying a damn thing if a tornado was ravaging your home this afternoon. Lives are more important than 5 minutes of golf. I will continue to repeat that if and when we cut into programming to keep people safe.’ she tweeted.
The death threats were a little over the top as the channel still managed to show the golf competition while splitting the screen with the weather warnings.
‘We had a split screen. And golf was in a bigger box than our coverage,’ Dorsey confirmed.
Broadcast networks often cut into or out of programming in cases of extreme weather and are allowed to interrupt previously scheduled shows in cases of extreme weather which could potentially threaten lives.
Viewers complained the tornado alert could have instead been communicated by a scroll at the bottom of the screen or a even a text alert.
During the 11pm broadcast on Sunday night, Dorsey, clearly upset, went on to explain the station’s thinking for interrupting the climax of the historic sports event.
‘There were severe storms coming through and the final round of the Masters was playing on our channel. We cut into that programming when there was a tornado warning. This is not a plan that we stumbled upon. This is is something we had in place days in advance days in advance,’ Dorsey said.
‘We knew there was going to be severe weather so we decided that if there were tornado warnings we would do a double box so that we could keep you updated with the current weather and so that people who wanted to see the final round of the masters could still watch.
‘We were on for about 10 to 12 minutes and in that time the thousands of hateful emails, phone calls, Facebook messages and tweets that the CBS 46 newsroom received is unacceptable. Here at CBS 46 our number one priority is to keep you all safe and in the future that’s what we will continue to do,’ the forecaster said.
‘We especially want to bring you the most updated information, so in the future, regardless of what is on programming, especially when there is a tornado warning you can turn us on and we will cut over any programming to keep you at home safe.’
Tiger Woods with with his green jacket and the Masters Trophy, which depicts the Augusta National clubhouse
Other viewers were more sympathetic to the situation the weather forecasters were in
The Federal Communication Commission expects stations to alert viewers when there is sudden inclement weather according to University of Georgia atmospheric sciences professor Marshall Shepherd, who is also a former president of the American Meteorological Society.
‘There are still a significant number of people, elderly, vulnerable, and marginalized populations, that may not have other resources to receive a warning,’ Shepherd wrote answering criticisms as to why an app alert would not be as successful.
Woods ended up winning the Masters before the storms rolled into Augusta after shooting shot a two-under 70 to finish at 13 under overall and defeat Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka and Xander Schauffele by one stroke.
It was his first major victory since the 2008 U.S. Open.
Tornadoes were reported in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama although none reportedly touched down in Georgia.
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