Eastbourne teen could be UK’s youngest ever tornado chaser

Kane Durham with 'Dorothy' from the movie Twister
Kane Durham with 'Dorothy' from the movie Twister

A 14-year-old Eastbourne teen could be the youngest ever British storm chaser.

Some people’s idea of a holiday is relaxing on a beach, or sightseeing stationary landscapes – but for Kane Durham it was the adrenaline rush of chasing tornadoes across the US.

The family saw 10 tornadoes

The family saw 10 tornadoes

In the unorthodox trip the 14-year-old and his family joined a group of storm enthusiasts and travelled thousands of miles through Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska. They saw 10 tornadoes, all in all.

His dad Daniel, who joined him for the adventure, described the first moment they saw one of them.

He said, “We were parked up watching a wall cloud just outside of McCook in Nebraska in the hope we could see our first tornado.

“The wind picked up and rain fell and we were told to stay put in the car as a small tornado developed directly above us and passed over our vehicle. That was tornado number one.”

The family booked a tour with a company called Weather Holidays which promises the “trip of a lifetime” across a stretch known as Tornado Alley.

Daniel, who lives in Sovereign Harbour, said, “Over the course of 10 days we drove 4,800 miles through Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska witnessing 10 tornados.

“We saw hail roar, large hail, hail fog, the most incredible lightning, ball lightning which is rare, and, on visiting the town of Wakita, we got to see the original ‘Dorothy’ from the film Twister.”

Named aptly after the lead character in Wizard of Oz, Dorothy is a machine in the 1996 film which measures tornadoes. Hail roar is a loud sound which emanates from a storm cloud and is caused by heavy hail hitting the ground.

Daniel said, “We have also been led to believe that at 14-years-old Kane is the youngest UK storm chaser. Something he is quite proud of.”