Skip to main content

WISC-TV warns viewers of tornadoes with help of new tool

WISC-TV Chief Meteorologist Gary Cannalte uses the 3D X-Vision feature of ESP:LIVE to show a 3-D cross-section of a tornado-producing thunderstorm. Cannalte graphically shows viewers the updraft, downdraft, and areas of rotation to pinpoint the location of the tornado.

WISC-TV in Madison, WI, used ESP:LIVE - Exclusive Storm Prediction, for the first time, Thursday, Aug. 18, as tornadoes rumbled through the viewing area.

WISC chief meteorologist Gary Cannalte described the event as the worst tornado outbreak in his 15 years at the station. He and the station’s news team provided viewers with notice of threatening tornado rotation earlier than ever before seen on local television.

Weather Central’s ESP:LIVE, branded as Doppler 3000 Interactive, offers 3-D X-Vision and Velocity Scope, both of which proved invaluable in the station’s live coverage. WISC is one of a handful of Weather Central clients who have the new ESP:LIVE system.

Coincidentally, the station put its ESP:LIVE system online the day of the tornado outbreak. The system allowed the station to highlight areas where storms were rotating with the conventional radar display, giving viewers early warning of potential tornado development.

The system allowed the station to turn the storm on its side and give views a 3-D look depicting where updrafts were and heavy rain and hail aloft would reach the ground.

The storms spawned at least 15 tornadoes in southern Wisconsin, killing one person and leaving widespread destruction. A minimum of 15 homes were destroyed, and more than 100 were damaged.

For more information, visit

Back to the top