A large waterspout was spotted off the coast of Destin, Florida this morning and captured by several people who have undoubtably been inundated by social media managers asking to use their footage on their platforms. No good deed goes unpunished. It was pretty damn impressive and harrowing — the type of stuff you'd see in a foreboding scene at the beginning of an End Times movie. Or just part of a thunderstorm if you don't want to get hyperbolic.
Hey, what is a waterspout is something you might be asking. There's no way this is what the Itsy-Bitsy Spider was climbing up, was it? Here's someone passionate on the subject.
Dr. Joseph Golden, a distinguished waterspout authority with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), defines the waterspout as a "funnel which contains an intense vortex, sometimes destructive, of small horizontal extent and which occurs over a body of water." The belief that a waterspout is nothing more than a tornado over water is only partially true. The fact is, depending on how they form, waterspouts come in two types: tornadic and fair weather.
The storm was running parallel to the coast so the spout never made landfall. It did, however, succeed in its attempt to go viral. Big day for the storm.