Encore - Tornadic Waterspouts off the Island of Rhodes, Greece

July 21, 2018


Today and every Saturday Earth Science Picture of the Day invites you to rediscover favorites from the past. Saturday posts feature an EPOD that was chosen by viewers like you in our monthly Viewers' Choice polls. Join us as we look back at these intriguing and captivating images.

Photographer: Stratos Koufos
Summary Authors: Stratos Koufos; Jim Foster

January 2013 Viewer's Choice The photo above shows twin tornadic waterspouts sweeping across the Mediterranean Sea between Rhodes and southwestern Turkey. During the winter season, there's occasionally a strong southerly flow (winds from the southern quadrant) in the eastern Mediterranean. On this January day in 2002, the winds were blowing especially hard (9 on Beaufort Scale). Just before the funnels descended, however, winds shifted to the north and rain began to fall. Tornadic waterspouts are tornadoes that happen to form over water or move from land to water. Unlike the weak fair weather spouts that sometimes occur over water bodies on hot, humid summer days with light winds, tornadic waterspouts are associated with powerful thunderstorms. Fortunately, there were no reports of deaths or injuries from these twisters. Photo taken on January 15, 2002.