Waterspouts Touch Down Off Lakeshore

Thursday, Sep 12, 2013  |  Updated 4:41 PM CDT
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Watch as a pair of waterspouts coast along Lake Michigan in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Video Courtesy of Kenosha News

Kenosha News

Watch as a pair of waterspouts coast along Lake Michigan in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Video Courtesy of Kenosha News

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Boaters beware!

Kenosha Police reported waterspouts off the lakeshore Thursday afternoon that were heading towards the Waukegan area.

A funnel cloud was first spotted off the lakefront near 94th Street, according to Sergeant Bill Beth with the Kenosha County Sheriff's Department.

The area's dispatch center activated tornado sirens at 1:16 p.m., Beth said.

Waterspouts captured on video by Kenosha News shows a large waterspout off the lakeshore splitting into two.

It is not known if those waterspouts touched on land, but Beth said they clouds began to form over land, but touched down in the water.

The National Weather Service issued a special marine warning for nearshore waters from Winthrop Harbor to Wilmette Harbor until 2:30 p.m.  They said conditions were right for a waterspout to form.

A message from the service reads:

AT 130 PM CDT...DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED SHOWERS AND

  THUNDERSTORMS...CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A WATERSPOUT AND STRONG WINDS

  TO 40 KNOTS OVER WINTHROP HARBOR...MOVING SOUTHEAST AT 20 KNOTS.

  THE KENOSHA AIRPORT OBSERVER REPORTED A WATERSPOUT TO THE

  SOUTHEAST OF THE KENOSHA AIRPORT OUT OVER THE LAKE.

High winds are expected along the lake front this evening and into tomorrow.

According to the National Weather Service, waterspouts have the same characteristics as a land tornado and are often accompanied by high winds and seas, large hail, and frequent dangerous lightning.

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