MEMPHIS, Tenn. — When tornadoes hit, meteorologists have an incredible responsibility to keep people safe, keeping cool on the air even though a killer is heading right for our doorstep.

But sometimes that responsibility hits very close to home.

In February 2008, as a storm system spawned 87 tornadoes that killed 57 people, WREG’s Chief meteorologist Tim Simpson and veteran meteorologist Jim Jaggers were tracking storms all day and all night.

Late in the afternoon, they spotted a funnel cloud on the horizon, and watched it grow into an EF2 tornado that raked across Southaven, Mississippi and into Memphis.

Jim had to tell his family — on air — to get to safety.

“People are depending on us,” Tim says. “Their lives depend on what we say and how we warn them. And that’s something we take seriously here at News Channel 3.”

That’s one of the severe weather stories you’ll find in “Tornado Alert: Emotional Terror,” a new podcast debuting today on iTunes, Spotify and WREG.com.

“Tornado Alert: Emotional Terror” brings WREG’s Weather Experts together with colleagues from Oklahoma City, Fort. Smith and Birmingham to recount their scariest moments on the air.

You’ll find it here on WREG.com, as well as iTunes and Spotify — we urge you to download it, rate it and then share it with your friends.”

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