A waterspout was spotted yesterday from Mulinu’u sitting just to the east of Apia at around 1:26pm.
The tornado-like phenomena was seen for just a few minutes heading further east until it was covered by dark clouds.
A waterspout is an intense columnar cortex (usually appearing as a funnel-shaped cloud) that occurs over a body of water. In other words it is a non-super cell tornado over a body of water.
This was confirmed by an official at the Samoa Meteorology Office who said that the convergence of trade winds could have caused the sprout.
“We are currently experiencing a convergence of Northern and western winds which could be the cause of the sprout,” the official said.
“The satellites have not picked up any reading of a water sprout because there is a lot of cloud cover over Samoa.”
The official added that this is not a common occurrence and it is not a threat because it is moving away from Samoa and the wind readings are still at a decent 5 – 10 knots.