Funnel cloud over Whanganui

Last updated 13:08 19/12/2013
CHAISE TAYLOR/Facebook

A twister-like cloud appears over the North Island town of Whanganui.

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A funnel cloud made an appearance over Whanganui this morning, surprising residents.

Allan MacGibbon saw the cloud forming from the middle of town, in London St.

"My partner spotted it when she got out of the car to go to work. I got out, looked and said, 'bloody hell, it's a twister'."

They watched it for about five minutes, he said.

"It did start to get quite long, you could see it going round and round."

The weather had been unusually warm and rainy before it formed, he said.

A video of the funnel cloud forming was posted on the Wanganui Facebook page.

It occurred about 8am, followed by a second, smaller twister, the videographer said.

"Saw it out my kitchen window and thought I was dreaming," Sheryle Horne wrote.

There did not appear to be any damage.

The Whanganui Fire Service said they had not received any calls about the funnel cloud.

MetService meteorologist Daniel Corbett said the twister was caused by the front moving up the country today.

"It's the converging winds along coastal areas that can give rise to these storms and give low level circulations or twists," he said.

"When you get an active front and a big, strong wind change it can create the little twisting in the lower parts of a thunderstorm cloud."

More thunderstorms were likely to occur over eastern parts of the North Island this afternoon.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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