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Tornadoes In Fort Lauderdale, Florida: Flights Disrupted, Residents Without Power

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Dark clouds hover above buildings amid tornadoes in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, April 10, 2018. Photo: Reuters

By Pritha Paul, International Business Times - Business

Two tornadoes swept through Broward and Palm Beach counties, on Tuesday afternoon as a large portion of Florida was subjected to heavy storm, hail and rain showers.

A funnel cloud over downtown Fort Lauderdale, was spotted at 3:36 p.m. EDT by the weather watchers. The National Weather Service was still waiting to confirm if the cloud transformed into a tornado after touching ground. A confirmation, if any, is expected from the agency by Wednesday, CBS News reported.

Meanwhile, Barry Baxter, a meteorologist confirmed one of the tornadoes was spotted at the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and another along U.S. Route 98 in the western portion of Palm Beach County, The Sun-Sentinel reported.

Another meteorologist, Chuck Caracozza, warned people not to get out of their houses for as long as the severe weather lasts. “People in that area should stay inside and take shelter," Caracozza said, the Miami-Herald reported.

As a result of the tornado at the airport, 225 flights were delayed, 18 were canceled and there was a two and half hour closure of the north runway. The tornado ended up damaging a small private plane and scattering luggage trolleys over the airfield. The airport crew was trying to clear the debris.

Areas like Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, Pompano Beach, and Davie was doused in heavy rain, while areas like Plantation experienced quarter-sized hail and Dania Beach reportedly had 63 mph wind blowing over it.

Thousands of houses across the area lost power and firefighters responded to 38 emergency calls between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. EDT. The calls ranged from utility fires, severed live wires, heavy flooding of streets and a possible run over with a vehicle. However, no injuries were reported.

Battalion Chief Greg May said, on a normal day the fire department gets 8 to 10 such calls. “That was a pretty bad storm,” May said. “We weren’t expecting that, it just came out of nowhere.”

One of the tornadoes brought down a tree onto a house at 422 NW 7th Terrace and the Coral Springs. The Parkland Fire Department tweeted a picture of a gazebo with its thatched roof burnt.

Jason Holloway, 43, a pilot and boat captain who moved from Dallas last year, caught sight of the tornado over Fort Lauderdale from the 42nd floor of a building. “I was surprised it looked as big as it did,” Holloway said. “It looked like it was the real deal.”

The National Weather Service issued a tornado warning and later a severe thunderstorm warning for parts of Broward County. The second warning went out of effect at 5 p.m. EDT as the storm headed away from the area. A tornado warning was also issued for the Dania Beach area.The storms moved over to the Atlantic, toward eastern Miami-Dade in the early evening on Tuesday. The National Weather Service said people living in the area might experience possible rain showers.

The only silver lining was a vibrant rainbow that showed up over Fort Lauderdale as soon as the storm clouds dissipated.

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U.S. - U.S. Daily News: Tornadoes In Fort Lauderdale, Florida: Flights Disrupted, Residents Without Power
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