‘Tornado’ seen during storm
VILLAGERS were left perplexed when a ‘mini tornado’ hit parts of West Lancashire.
The North West was hit by thunderstorms and torrential downpours on Monday night after days of unsettled weather conditions.
A yellow thunderstorm warning covered the whole area as heavy rain of up to 1.6in (40mm) fell within an hour.
But during the thunderstorms, what looked like a small tornado was seen over areas including Parbold, Skelmersdale and Up Holland.
Leon Kamel said: “It was amazing witnessing it first hand, as I’ve never actually seen one in person before.”
But while it appeared that a mini tornado was raging in the skies, the Met Office had a less dramatic explanation.
A spokesman said: “This picture has captured a very clear example of a funnel cloud.
“These can form at the base of thunderstorms and they can develop into tornadoes, but they are only officially recognised as a tornado when the tip makes contact with the ground.
“With the density of thunderstorms that we have seen over parts of the UK in recent days, it is no surprise that we have seen eyewitness accounts.
“In the UK we get about 30 tornadoes each year, on average, but most are very shortlived and don’t have the destructive capacity of those that form in Tornado Alley in the United States.”
What looked like a mini tornado came through Parbold