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Night Time WaterSpout Rolls Over Galveston

by Mario Gomez

khou.com

Posted on August 30, 2009 at 11:51 PM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 27 at 11:12 AM

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Waterspouts are usually more common during a hot summer afternoon. So on a quiet summer night Nick Hellyar and Travis Player probably never thought they'd see a water spout heading towards the Island , but they have the photos to prove it.

An enhanced photo shows what some witnesses said was a 60-75 foot wide waterspout moving onshore between 33rd and 29th streets near the Commodore Hotel. The water spout is churning the gulf water just offshore. The two pedestrians on the seawall look to be too close for comfort. Lightning in the background confirms our Doppler estimates of 50-80 lightning strikes in under an hour in this small but very powerfull supercell. The storm took shape a few miles offshore along a weak stationary frontal boundary. As the funnel blew in, a car was flipped over on 30th at Seawall Blvd. with power poles blown down, and transformers blown. Two residences on 29th street near the Seawall Blvd. had significant structural damage and a souvenir shop on the same street had its roof blown off. A police car window was blown out as the waterspout passed nearby. One to three inches of much need rain fell Sunday evening in less than hour causing some street flooding over the island. Radar showed the storm tracking WNW towards the mainland after 10:30pm with some flooding downpours near Texas City, Hitchcock and Bayou Vista continuing till midnight. More damage will be likely seen after sunrise. Send your photographs in to KHOU.com.

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