Rare waterspout in Eastern Cape, South Africa

(ORDO NEWS) — Residents of the village of Kofimwaba in the Eastern Cape were stunned after they recently witnessed a rare weather event – a waterspout.

Videos showing a breathtaking vortex of air and water mist swirling over the Nkorha Dam in Nkuku village in Kofimwabe have gone viral on social media.

In one of the videos, the screams of the villagers are heard, claiming that this is magic or a signal for the end of the world.

Villager Sibusiso Zonke expressed his speculation on Facebook, saying: “This could be the resurrection of the dead or signs of the return of Jesus. It is clear that everything will start here in Nkuku.”

Zonke told News24 that the villagers were struck by the rare event, which has reportedly not been seen in Nkuku village so far.

“Locals are still in shock and believe that this event may be related to all the deaths that have occurred at this dam in the past. This is the dam that connects the Nkuku and Tsomo rivers,” Zonke said.

But the South African meteorological service dismissed the villagers’ theories, saying that waterspouts are just as much a phenomenon as any other weather event.

South African Weather Service meteorologist Lelo Kleinbuy, based in the Gkeberhe office, said:

“The World Meteorological Organization (WMO) defines a waterspout as follows: It is usually a relatively small, weak rotating column of air over open water under certain types of cumulus clouds.”

She added that if this column later moved to land, as opposed to the waterspout in question, then it would be called a landspout.

According to Kleinbois, waterspouts “usually develop or form under certain types of cumulus clouds (in the case of Cofimwaba it was a cumulonimbus cloud) where winds blowing from different directions meet.”

“They are not connected to supercells, as is the case with tornadoes; in fact, waterspouts or landspouts are weaker, slower-moving versions of tornadoes.”

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