It's a bird, it's a plane, it's...actually totally terrifying. Residents of Penang, Malaysia have been Tweeting and sharing a video of a bizarre and destructive weather phenomenon. It's not a tornado. It's not a hurricane. It's not even a tsunami. It's something that you may never have heard of, but that has destroyed nearly 50 buildings on the island.
It's called a waterspout, and it's a rare occurrence. For over five minutes, residents watched the spout off-shore before it hit land, ripping roofs off of houses and generally scaring the bajeesus out of everyone around. Thankfully no one was hurt, which means that we can revel at this astounding force of nature without feeling guilty about it. This thing completely defies gravity.
We've got some amazing photos of the waterspout for you to check out, and make sure you scroll until the end to see the actual video. This thing is 100% mind-blowing.
Ok but what even IS a waterspout?Because honestly it sounds like something out of an anime.
No, it turns out that a waterspout is a real thing.It occurs when a vortex (basically some intense wind) happens over water.
Now the vortex itself isn't that weird.What IS uncommon is a waterspout that picks up actual water. That's when things start to get wild.
Hold onto your hats friends, because this sounds entirely made up.Any marine life within about one yard of the surface can get picked up and flung into the air.
Do you want a Sharknado?
<Because this is how you get a Sharknado.
They can also be super misleading.
The residents in Penang thought it's a tornado. No, it's not! It's a waterspout! This phenomenon occured today. Rat… https://t.co/Ax5kDDdREn— Lim Phaik Suat (@Lim Phaik Suat)1554107907.0
But in all seriousness, these babies are super interesting.
The residents in Penang, Malaysia thought it's a tornado. No, it's not! It's a #waterspout! This occured today. A… https://t.co/JaT2Laq7aN— Parthiban Shanmugam (@Parthiban Shanmugam)1554119561.0
This cute graphic explains it all.
1/1 Some are connected to a cumulus congestus cloud, some to a cumuliform cloud and some to a cumulonimbus cloud. I… https://t.co/5ABUKyD713— Parthiban Shanmugam (@Parthiban Shanmugam)1554119617.0
Ok, ok, enough preamble. What does it actually look like?
Huge #waterspout in Penang, #Malaysia, 31 March 2019 🎬 Jonathan Freeman #wasserhose #TrombaMarina #TrąbaWodna… https://t.co/C1oRmAFMPh— Windy (@Windy)1554137857.0
I think Randy Jackson speaks for us all on this one.Nope.
Yeah, Twitter definitely agrees with us.
No. No thank you. Imagine waking up,stretching,going to look at ur amazing view,and.....this. I’d have a stroke.… https://t.co/X0hHko0nc8— Sarah Bee🐝💋 (@Sarah Bee🐝💋)1554135790.0
But luckily for us, we can watch it from the comforts of our own home.Because this is 2019 and when people see something terrifying, they take videos and pictures of it.
Destruction of property?Definitely need a picture of that!
But honestly this media is actually incredibly helpful.
And as Katie McMahon points out...
Surreal to witness. First day working in Tokyo, up high in office tower, looked out window saw tornado-looking thin… https://t.co/zWLHNMz0aC— Katie McMahon (@Katie McMahon)1554134713.0
And we can't forget that the waterspout has real consequences.
NEW video of debris being lofted by this morning’s powerful #waterspout in Penang, Malaysia! 🌪🇲🇾 Over 50 houses w… https://t.co/NvfBkZt2dw— Nash from Nashville (@Nash from Nashville)1554134119.0
Many of the buildings couldn't stand up to the force of the wind.
Large water spout sends flimsy roofing flying in northern Penang - https://t.co/diKPK6fcfr https://t.co/lPfdLfXrVl— Anil Netto (@Anil Netto)1554102386.0
Homes in particular were damaged by the storm.
https://t.co/KjQgD95iGs— farizal⚽️ (@farizal⚽️)1554099583.0