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Tornado In Co. Armagh

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martinastro
Martin Mc Kenna
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« on: August 16, 2008, 09:14:52 pm »

The following verbatim account appeared on page 3 of the Portadown News (a weekly newspaper published in Portadown, Co. Armagh) of 15th August 2008:

Laurelvale man has the shock of his life

A LAURELVALE man had the shock of his life on Monday when not long after stopping to look at a tornado in a corn field, his jeep was struck by a bolt of lighting.

Property developer Rollo Gillespie was amazed to see the towering twister when he was driving through Laurelvale on Monday just before 6 pm.

He stopped to take a photograph on his mobile phone and marvel at the phenomenon which occurs when a column of strongly rising warm air is set spinning by high winds.

 "I couldn't believe what I was seeing." said Rollo. "And the most amazing thing was there was a man driving a tractor and cutting a hedge in the same field. He seemed unaware of the tornado behind him - it was a surreal scene really."

As if a real live tornado swirling around Laurelvale wasn't enough, Rollo was witness to another freak of nature when a few minutes later the side of his jeep was hit by lightning.

 "The skies had just opened when the lightning struck the vehicle", he said. It didn't leave a mark, although it cleaned off the wax on the side of the jeep where it landed.

 "As for the twister, it was small in diameter - around five to 10 free (sic") across and had seemed like a rain cloud at first.

"It had a light grey outer circle and an inside darker column which moved about and disappeared. Thankfully, it didn't suck anything up and leave a trail of devastation in its wake like in the movies."

Monday presumably refers to Monday 11th August, when there was a little thunder and lighting c. 6.15 pm and a downpour of rain (c. 37 mm up to 9 am on 12th) at Portadown, about 5 miles from Laurelvale. "Free" above presumably should be "feet".

There is also a small accompanying photo captioned "Rollo Gilliespie" showing Mr Gillespie holding up what seems to be a mobile phone in his left hand.

Copied from a thread on the UKweatherworld.
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Steveo74
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« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2008, 01:13:47 pm »

Hi Martin, Heard about that soon after it happened, totally forgot to tell you.. That was the same time I was taking the time lapse as that is the direction of lauravale, Mother-inlaw phoned to tell me about it. 
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         Steven..

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martinastro
Martin Mc Kenna
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« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2008, 02:12:10 pm »

Did you hear anything else about it Steven?, any details which are not in the above article?. That's the first NI tornado this year.
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Steveo74
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« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2008, 08:14:39 pm »

Hi Martin, haven't heard much except what was in the paper, however found this link with a image that he took...

http://www.portadowntimes.co.uk/news/Laurelvale-man-has-the-shock.4392008.jp

Hope this helps...  Grin
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         Steven..

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martinastro
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« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2008, 09:09:14 pm »

Thanks for the link Steven, that's great. Pity there wasn't a bigger image. Looks like the funnel goes up high and bends into the base. Cool. Very trans funnel. At a first glance it looked like a rain shaft.
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