A powerful tornado has swept through the northeast Hamburg late Tuesday, June 7, 2016, blowing off the roofs of buildings, uprooting more than 50 trees, damaging cars and disrupting power supply. This is just one of many severe weather events in Germany over the last 10 days. Meteorologists warn the bad weather will continue through the rest of the week.
City's fire services declared a state of emergency and dispatched more than half of the available fire service workers following the tornado reports.
"There are countless roofs that have flown off and flooded basements. More than 1 000 firefighters and technical helpers are on duty," a spokesman at the Hamburg fire department, Jan Ole Unger, said late Tuesday. Firefighters, police, and other emergency personnel worked until early Wednesday to clear fallen trees and roof tiles off the streets and eliminate hazards at more than 250 sites along the twister’s 500-meter (1 640-foot) path through the city.
“In one street, the whirlwind knocked down more than 50 huge trees,” Unger said. "A power line had to be switched off after being hit by a tree, temporarily cutting electricity for some households in the area. It’s a miracle that nobody was hurt or killed.”
Residents reported seeing rain, then hailstones as big as table tennis balls, then suddenly a tornado formed.
As of early Thursday, June 9, meteorologists have not yet declared whether it was a tornado, which is defined as having contact with both the ground and a cloud. There is, however, a 'very high probability' that it was, said Andreas Friedrich, a tornado expert at Germany’s National Meteorological Service (DWD).
Just a few days ago, on June 5, two twisters formed and joined into one near Jübek, about 100 km (62 miles) north of Hamburg. There were no casualties or major damage. This is the best video of the event:
Featured image: Tornado over Hamburg, Germany - June 7, 2016. Credit: