I am News 6 WKMG’s Tom Sorrells and I’ve been a meteorologist for 34 years. My top concern is keeping Central Floridians safe during dangerous weather conditions and helping them plan their day. I’ve been covering Florida’s weather for News 6 for almost 20 years but have worked in many markets across the U.S., including Detroit, Columbus and Myrtle Beach.

I like to connect with the local community daily through a live chat segment called “Talk to Tom” and am known for my dedication to live weather coverage when hurricanes are bearing down on Florida. My work earned News 6 the prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award for journalistic excellence in its coverage of hurricanes Charley, Frances and Jeanne in 2004.

When not crunching data in the weather center, I can be found enjoying time with my wife, three daughters and Goldendoodle, Toby. I also enjoy going out on a nice day to fish or ride my motorcycle.

Now that you know a little bit about me, I’m ready for you to Ask Me Anything.

You can watch me on News 6 and keep up with Central Florida weather at www.clickorlando.com or follow me on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TomSorrellsWeather/ and Twitter https://twitter.com/tomsorrells.

Proof: https://i.redd.it/rnowmces2rh41.jpg Hey Guys thank you for all the questions. This was a fun 1st shot at Reddit. Hope to be back soon.

Comments: 98 • Responses: 30  • Date: 

Razgris12323 karma

As someone born and raised in West palm, why does Florida have a meteorologist if 90% of the time the weather changes from what you predicted? Couldn't you just hold up a sign that says look outside every 15 minutes?

News6WKMG21 karma

HA! I get that kind of question often. But the truth is we have ALLLLLLL kinds of crazy weather here in Florida. Example, last night we had frost, last week record heat, the week before that a tornado warning. So looking outside every 15 minutes would NOT help forecast all that stuff. Not to mention hurricane season. Back in the day, before better forecasting, people were often caught off guard by hurricanes. Never again!

Razgris1231 karma

Fair enough, can say for sure the early 2000s hurricanes we were happy to have forcasting prior to the big internet days

News6WKMG7 karma

True dat. Now the problem is more of so many putting Bad Weather information out that I battle the false reports...you know, like sharks swimming down streets, that is my new problem.

Razgris1233 karma

Hahaha I have a picture somewhere of us in a inflatable raft paddling up the street during one of those hurricanes. Can say for sure there was bass in the water from the local canals but no salt water life

News6WKMG2 karma

That is AWESOME!

The_Pirate_of_Oz-4 karma

[deleted]

News6WKMG5 karma

spoken....errrr, written I mean, ,like someone who has NEVER been through a hurricane!

The_Pirate_of_Oz-2 karma

[deleted]

News6WKMG4 karma

Gary does GREAT work. I do like the idea of the Recurring Cycle and I have seen him present it about 3 or 4 times at conferences. I believe it to be more of a guide than a forecast. But I do like it. I also believe it works better for the mid west and NE more than Florida..

kale4reals11 karma

Do you always get nervous before delivering the forecast or do you get used to it?

News6WKMG7 karma

I do not get nervous...I do get wired hot if my graphics fail..or if I forget something. But that is not from a fear of the camera. In the studio there are only a handful of people around. So its mostly a group of people I know and love and want me to do well. Not much to get nervous about.

stumpdawg4 karma

What do you think of Tom Skilling?

News6WKMG6 karma

LOVE him!!! I used to watch Tom way back when I started in this business. His command of graphics has always been SO impressive. I have never met him...but let's be honest, EVERYONE has been influenced by Tom Skilling.

phillyGrizz1 karma

Great to see you here Tom !No Audio/video feed I take ?

News6WKMG3 karma

Ummm..no. This is a question and answer thing. It's my first time. Sooo I'm a newbie here. But I am diggin' it so far.

phillyGrizz1 karma

Where is your favorite place to eat since you mentioned food is getting better ?

News6WKMG1 karma

At home of course! But my favorite place to eat out in Orlando? That would probably be 4 Rivers...I also enjoy Eddie V's. The new place in the Dr. Phillips area called DOMU is fantastic. I could go on and on...but those are a few of my favs.

stumpdawg1 karma

Lol. He's my local weatherguy.

He got a friend obsessed with meteorology in highschool. That kid could predict rain within a 20 min window by looking at the sky.

News6WKMG2 karma

So you are in Chicagoland somewhere?

stumpdawg1 karma

Aye.

News6WKMG2 karma

My niece live in Berwyn...you know where that is?

Blackspider11114 karma

What's the funniest blooper that ever happened to you? Is it possible to watch it somewhere?

I just really love watching news bloopers. One of my favorites is this one

News6WKMG6 karma

GREAT question! I have made mistakes on the air...I have had graphics freeze on me...blue walls appear...stuff stop working...audio shut down... but I dont think anyone has put them on youtube. You can search me on youtube and see me from the late 80s! I look WAY young. Loads of hair. But I believe most of my mistakes have NOT been logged. Which is a blessing!

CalClimate3 karma

Do you talk about climate change too, or just about weather? And if you wanted to mention sea level rise on air, would that be ok at your station?

News6WKMG8 karma

Funny you should ask. I do focus on Climate Change and plan to do more in the future. My station, especially my News Director, has my back on this topic. We are doing more and more every day. We have a new focus called Forecasting Change that deals with our issues here in Florida. Stay tuned!!!

Chtorrr2 karma

What is the very best cheese?

News6WKMG6 karma

Brie, Manchego, and Burrata are my favs...yours?

ILikeMyBlueEyes2 karma

Hi Tom! Is this your first time on Reddit? If so, how do you like it?

Also, say hi to the rest of the crew for me. I watch News 6 every night. It's definitely my favorite news station!

News6WKMG4 karma

This is our first attempt on Reddit. It's been kinda cool. No one has ever asked me about my cheese preferences before.:-) And thank you for the kind words about our station.

tripacer992 karma

Hey Tom! I followed you very closely on my portable b&w TV during Charlie. Thanks for everything you did to help us. I still remember the intense theme that played every time WKMG came back from commercial.

Are you familiar with Dr. Levi Cowan of Tropical Tidbits? The videos he makes during the hurricane season are so incredibly in-depth, I feel like you'd love them.

News6WKMG3 karma

Hi there...thank you for the kind words. I can not thank you enough for watching and staying with us during those days. And YES I LOVE Tropical Tidbits. That's good stuff.

meaganmday1 karma

Do you look forward to hurricane season? I personally don't but I know that I can always count on you to provide the best coverage. I moved back down here to Florida in 2017 after a couple years in Maryland and that was when Irma hit. It was my first hurricane, and you were who I turned to for information (until the power went out.) I lived previously in Gainesville for five years and never experienced one.

News6WKMG3 karma

Hi there Megan. Thanks for the question. NO, I do NOT look forward to hurricane season. I came to peace with it more than a decade ago. I used to REALLY dread the season. But I decided that I couldn't bear wishing half of my life away. So now, I still don't look forward to the season, but I breath deep for 6 breaths...open my eyes, and embrace doing my best in the season. And please know that we will all be here to give you lots of heads up before a system becomes a problem and we will be here alllll the way through when a system comes our way.

phillyGrizz1 karma

Great work this past hurricane season!I watched hours and hours of it online.

News6WKMG2 karma

Thank you for the kind words. Come to Florida!!!! Visit, stay, live!

IcyLemon0071 karma

What’s the scariest thing you’ve seen while searching for bad weather?

News6WKMG3 karma

a helicopter that got too close to a tornado and crashed comes to mind. That freaked me out.

IcyLemon0071 karma

Wow! I’d be soiling my shorts lol. Is there anything you’ve seen on the radar that stood out over anything you’ve seen before?

News6WKMG2 karma

My worst memory is watching the eye wall of Irma detach from the center of rotation and go north... RIGHT over my house. In that house were my wife and 2 or my children. That was a strange half of an hour. It peeled my shileges off the roof and caused about 70K dollars worth of damage. That's my worst radar memory. Well at least today its the one that comes to mind.

twisted341 karma

Do you estimate what time it will rain every day, or do you just say rain is in the forecast and collect on your 100% accuracy rating?

News6WKMG1 karma

hahahaha...NO ONE HAS A 100% accuracy rating! If you see someone saying "We are the MOST accurate" I think you should take that the same as someone who says "I am REALLY good looking!" And yes, we do a daypart forecast on every newscast. We show the rain arrival time, the end time, estimate the rainfall amounts, etc. I have to believe you live somewhere that you do NOT see WKMG News 6 the CBS station from Orlando?

twisted341 karma

I said that more tongue-in-cheek as I know it rains in Florida often, I live in the Midwest

News6WKMG1 karma

hahaha..okay. Come to Orlando!

Carol_Carrion1 karma

What do you predict this hurricane season will bring to central Florida?

News6WKMG1 karma

+Hey Carol!!! Right now it's waaaay too early for forecast for the season. But I will have a better idea in late April for the 1st half of the season. My guess is the season will be active and not below average. Of course it NEVER matters how many there are, it only matters if we get hit or not.

Carol_Carrion1 karma

Thanks Tom!

News6WKMG1 karma

Thank you!

phillyGrizz1 karma

Let’s hope nothing that brings DOOM!

News6WKMG3 karma

from your keyboard to Gods eyes my friend!

chonkalina1 karma

Hi Tom! How did "getting results" come to be? I grew up in Orlando but moved away for college, and the last few times I've been home, I hear all about the results y'all have been getting! Sometimes when I call my mom, I'll check in to make sure you're still getting results.

Also, do you and Tom Terry hang out? Do y'all use the same data for the forecast?

News6WKMG2 karma

Hi there... "Getting Results" is the brainchild of my General Manager Jeff Hoffman. When Jeff arrived here about 5 years ago he set out to rebrand the station. In my memory I think he said something like "I want it to be something that means something to people." So he came up with Getting Results. I was kinda lost in the beginning...but then we started "Getting Results!" It means making things happen for the viewer (in my mind anyway) So it can be we are helping a consumer get their money back. Helping a veteran get the medical coverage they deserve. Making sure your children are getting to school safely. Or, in my case, making sure you get a weather forecast that can help you plan your day, you weekend, your party, etc. We really want to be a part of this community. We are here to "Get Results" I mean it man...it's catchy. So catchy in fact that OTHER stations have tried to rip it off! If you happen across them sometimes you will hear them say "Jo Jo the clown (made up name) got results for a viewer in Apopka." I hear it all the time. It's flattering of course, but it also let's me know that what we are doing is working...and the competition knows it!!! Speaking of competition: Tom Terry. Yes, TT and I are friendly. We used to be co-workers, but that was 20 years ago. We do NOT hang out much... we have shared rides at conferences and stuff like that. If we run into each other we do sit and talk. But we don't like get together for Thanksgiving or anything like that. I think I am actually on friendly terms all the other mets in this market. Maybe I am delusional:-)

phillyGrizz1 karma

It’s good to be friendly to everyone!I know people who would hire you in a snap of a the fingers and Peace sign the done deal !I hope I win the lottery to be the guy who pays you 7 figures one day !✌️

News6WKMG1 karma

Wow! Thanks man. You win the lottery you keep me in mind! In the meantime I do appreciate you watching News 6 and making comments on here. This has been kinda cool.

HopelessHamsta0 karma

Why does it always rain on me?

News6WKMG3 karma

THAT sounds like a problem for a character from Charlie Brown...you know, most people complain to me that it NEVER rains at their house. You are the lucky one!

r3dk0w0 karma

Are you stocking up on giant black markers for this season's hurricanes?

News6WKMG1 karma

hahahaha...uh, no. I am not:-)

rational_faultline0 karma

Why does God hate Florida?

News6WKMG5 karma

Ohhhh noooooo! I believe God LOVES Florida. That is why the "Holy Land" is here on of I-4! Seriously, I do think this place I live is special. I love it. I worked HARD for years to get here. I have loved every place I have ever lived, but life is better under the palm. We are now the 3rd most populated state in the nation. The food is getting better, services are getting better, we are leaving the old rough Florida life behind and becoming a mecca of good living. I think the Lord loves this place. Not kidding.