[QODLink]
Weather

Tornado strikes southern Portugal

At least eight people are injured as violent winds batter the Algarve.
Last Modified: 17 Nov 2012 08:16
A powerful tornado hit the south of Portugal, flipping over cars and damaging a number of homes and businesses [EPA]

Eight people have been injured after a powerful tornado hit Portugal’s Algarve region.

Violent winds overturned cars, smashed windows and stripping tiles from roofs.

Most of those injured had been on the road when the storm picked up their vehicles and threw them onto their roofs.

A funnel-shaped cloud had been seen approaching the coast from the Atlantic shortly before the damage was reported.

Funnel clouds are rotating areas of cloud which extend downwards from the base of the main thunderstorm cloud. In themselves they are harmless, but if they develop sufficiently and touch the ground, then they can become powerful tornadoes.

Tornados are triggered by the interaction of two contrasting air types, and can occur almost anywhere. They have been seen in every continent except Antarctica.

In the US, where there is a stark contrast between the hot air from the Gulf of Mexico and the cool air from Canada, tornadoes are often extremely destructive and life-threatening.

In Europe, however, the vast majority of tornadoes are pretty feeble and don’t cause any significant damage. Fortunately the destruction caused by this recent storm in Portugal is rare.

A few more thunderstorms are expected to rumble across the Algarve for the remainder of Saturday, before clearing away for Sunday.

210

Source:
Al Jazeera
Topics in this article
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.