Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Twisting Through Venice

Tornadoes are not a common sight in Italy but yesterday brought a rare waterspout that swept onshore over several islands near Venice, leading to some damage and rescuing of children.

A dozen homes lost their roofs at St. Erasmo Island as the spout-turned-twister swept across.  Venetians were terrified by the sight of the waterspout as it moved through, with scenes of panic, broken branches and strong wind, but there were no injuries. . ."

While not common, it's not unprecedented to see a tornado in the Venice area.  One such occurrence was in 2008, with a rather destructive twister blowing through Venice in 1970.  That 1970 tornado killed over 30 people, including 21 when it lifted and then capsized a waterbus that was in the path of the tornado-turned-waterspout.  That said, the number of twisters in Italy on an annual basis and the number of tornadic outbreaks in Italy (and Europe) pales in comparison to what we see in the US each year.  That said, parts of Europe are more "prone" to tornadic events than others, particularly Germany, Poland, and surprisingly the UK (which gets about 30 twisters a year).

More:  Photos via the Venezia Today Facebook page.