A huge tornado-like weather event hit a city, leaving residents worried about the destruction it could cause.
A “rare” and dangerous waterspout resembling a tornado hit a bay on the southern coast of Cuba.
The grim weather event saw the beak descend from dark, ominous clouds around 5 p.m. Saturday CUBA time near the city of Cienfuegos.
Reuters news agency reported that the long, huge waterspout was a “rare” event. Indeed, very few are generally seen around Cuba. However, at least three of these waterspouts have been reported in and around Cienfuegos Bay in the past four months.
The eight-minute existence of the huge swirling waterspout was so dramatic that locals took dozens of videos and snapshots of the phenomenon.
The bill formed after a day of thunderstorms in the area.
“It is without a doubt a beautiful sight,” Virgilio Regueira, meteorologist at the Cienfuegos Provincial Meteorological Center, told Facebook.
“But be very careful, because we know they are very dangerous.”
Downpours as an “alien invasion”
According to Bureau of Meteorology senior meteorologist Dean Narramore, waterspouts are extraordinary weather events that resemble “the start of an alien invasion.”
The spout is a rotating column of air that sucks water from the sea and twists it, connecting the water below and the cloud above.
They form when winds blowing in different places meet and have nowhere to go but upwards.
“They are spectacular but short-lived, usually no longer than five minutes,” Mr Narramore wrote in The conversation.
“The winds inside the waterspout can be faster than 100 kilometers per hour, and they can cause great damage to boats at sea.
“Waterspouts are in some ways like tornadoes that form over land. But where tornadoes are associated with huge supercell storms, waterspouts can form during smaller storms or even just showers or the presence of the right kind of clouds.
Waterspouts rarely make it ashore, but when they do, they can cause serious damage. One of these tornadoes made landfall at Lennox Head, south of Byron Bay, northern New South Wales, in 2010 and destroyed dozens of homes.
After the tornado’s eight-minute life, it then descended into the sea and no damage was done, the Weather Center said.