Written by Scott Campbell.
Published at 09:38 GMT on Monday, 6th August 2012.
Cumbernauld sees strange weather anomaly over weekend

Second picture is used on the courtesy of Twitter user @PaulRbhoy.
CUMBERNAULD has seen some amount of odd weather anomalies over the years but Saturday (4th August 2012) saw one weather feature which had onlookers puzzled.

At around 6pm on Saturday evening, Facebook and Twitter users became uploading pictures from around Glasgow, Kilsyth and Cumbernauld, saying they witnessed a tornado, accompanied with thunder, lightning and heavy rain. 

The weather anomaly was in fact not a tornado, but is known as a cloud funnel, a strange anomaly which is “…formed when the air circulating at the base of the cloud extends vertically downwards.”

A spokesman for the Met Office told Cumbernauld Media: “There have been a number of heavy showers across the Central Belt earlier this evening, with thunder and lightning.

“The airflow in these types of intense thunderstorms is very turbulent and can cause small scale circulation within and at the base of the cloud.”

We showed the Met Office the pictures from Facebook and Twitter and asked what the anomaly was exactly, “What you have in these pictures is called a funnel cloud, formed when the air circulating at the base of the cloud extends vertically downwards”, the spokesman added. “However, to become a tornado, the funnel cloud has to make contact with the ground.”