Waterspout Forms Over Lake Michigan, Visible from Chicago

A waterspout formed over Lake Michigan Thursday afternoon, and could be seen from Chicago, according to the National Weather Service. 

Just after 2:15 p.m., the NWS in Chicago tweeted that the waterspout was visible from Chicago a few minutes earlier, and had already dissipated. 

According to the NWS, a waterspout is a "funnel which contains an intense vortex, sometimes destructive," occurring over a body of water.

Waterspouts come in two types, the NWS adds: tornadic and fair weather.

Thursday's waterspout appeared to be fair weather, in that it formed over the water in humid conditions with warm water temperatures (instead of beginning on land as a tornado and moving onto the water).

Though fair weather waterspouts are smaller and less dangerous than the tornadic kind, the NWS warns that boaters should seek safe harbor immediately if a waterspout is spotted, as it can cause extensive damage. 

Another waterspout was spotted on Lake Michigan Thursday, near Kenosha, Wisconsin. 

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