The first tornado since 1954 hit Russia's Novosibirsk region on July 19, 2016. It was Novosibirsk's first tornado in more than 60 years, but the third in Siberia in two weeks.
The sudden storm caused flooding in Novosibirsk's metro region, city center streets and shops, while the water opened cracks in asphalt large enough to swallow vehicles, The Siberian Times reports. Novosibirsk is Russia's third most populous city.
The rare tornado struck Burmaistrovo village, preceding flash flooding in and around the city. Luckily, no injuries were reported.
"We had a couple of really strong tornadoes in July 1954. One picked up a milkmaid and a tractor with a driver inside. Miraculously, the same tornado carefully 'put' them down so that they were not even hurt," said Renad Yagudin, the press secretary of Western Siberian Weather Centre, as quoted by the Siberian Times.
In the storm that followed Monday's tornado, cars fell into suddenly-opening gaping crevices close to Sibirsky Mall in Koshurnikova Street and Zhilina Street in the central district of Novosibirsk. Holes also appeared on the outskirts of the city.
Yagudin said 16 mm (0.62 inches) of precipitation occurred in 36 minutes in Uchebnaya meteorological station. "A key compounding factor were malfunctioning or non-existent storm drainage ducts."
Several meteorological stations in Tomsk and Kemerovo regions reported the strongest rains in 30 years.
Image credit: ACT-54
Image credit: ACT-54
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