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What was that? Landspout and 'dust devil' cause a stir at Brisbane Airport

Friday March 17, 2017 - 21:07 EDT

A landspout and a "dust devil" have been observed in separate weather events at Brisbane Airport, with reports the landspout caused damage to cars and brought down trees.

Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) senior forecaster David Grant said the systems were brief and that both were much weaker than a tornado.

The dust devil was observed near the airport apron, but did not cause any damage to aircraft or infrastructure.

Around the same time, the landspout appeared in Viola Place near the DFO shopping centre in the airport precinct.

Brisbane Airport captured vision of the dust devil over the concourse.

A spokesman said the airport was not damaged by the weather event.

Tia Burns posted a video of the landspout on Facebook and told the ABC she noticed it while driving to work at a business on the outskirts of the Brisbane Airport precinct.

"I saw at the end of the street that there was debris flying in the air and I noticed right down the end that it was just a whole dust cloud circling," she said.

"I tried to get into my work before it came over and actually went over our car park. Trees were flying everywhere, branches were flying off trees — [it] smashed a couple of car windows.



"One of the car windows at work was actually pulled out and thrown into our front door at our work and it shattered the glass."

She said sails covering the car park were also ripped up by the spout.

Mr Grant said landspouts were generally brief weather phenomena.

"The lifetime of a landspout is generally no more than about 10 to 20 minutes, and usually they are quite isolated, and any damage that is caused by them is minimal at best," he said.

Just before 4:00pm, the BOM issued a storm warning for areas around Brisbane Airport for damaging winds and heavy rainfall, but that warning was later cancelled.

A heavy downpour caused extensive flash flooding in the inner southern suburb of Coorparoo and there were reports of tree damage in the inner northern suburb of Clayfield.


- ABC

© ABC 2017

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