HYDERABAD: A waterspout, caused by a weather anomaly, occurred in the Manjira river in the Nirjipala of Vatpally mandal in Ranga Reddy district on Monday afternoon, creating panic among villagers who considered it to be a tornado.
According to the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), it was a “feeble funnel cloud” or “waterspout” that occurred at 1.12 pm. The cloud extended to a height of 7 km and covered an area of about 5-6 km. The intensity lasted for 20-25 minutes and gradually dissipated in half-an-hour.
Hyderabad Indian Meteorological Department head Dr K. Naga Ratna told Deccan Chronicle: “The waterspout was a type of thunderstorm formed because of the increase in the heat gradient and the moisture holding capacity in the region. It is an unusual phenomenon because such instability in weather conditions form thunderstorms but this was a waterspout, also called a cumulonimbus cloud.”
After the waterspout, the regions of Vatpally and Palvatla recorded 7 mm of rainfall as an after-effect.
“This type of waterspout usually occurs in backwaters or water bodies. No such similar phenomenon was observed in Telangana in recent years. There was one occurrence in the Eluru canal in Andhra Pradesh around two years back. We can also expect this phenomenon to occur in the Musi under similar instability in the weather conditions” she added.
Such spouts also occur on land, called a ‘land spout; while the one that occurs in conjunction with land and sea is called a tornado which moves with a speed of 200 kmph.
No damage was reported in the village as the intensity and speed of the waterspout was very low, although villagers were scared for life and thought that a life-threatening thunderstorm had struck, intimating the natives not to step out of their houses.
What is a waterspout?
- A funnel of water and cloud that connects with the waterbody (river/sea) and the sky
- Appear like tornadoes but very low in intensity and speed
- Occurs due to increase in heat and moisture in a region
- Small life span as compared to a tornado...