St Thomas Bay

WATERSPOUT OVER ST THOMAS BAY – 18th July 2006

An isolated thunderstorm moving in from the northeast affected the extreme northeast of Malta, especially Marsascala, Zabbar and the Cottonera area. Heavy rainfall was measured in these areas lasting for about 2 hours in Marsascala from 11.30am to 1.30pm. Rainfall measured was 46.0mm at Marsascala, 28.2mm at Vittoriosa and 25.0mm at Zabbar.

A waterspout lasting about 10 minutes was also seen over St Thomas Bay, Marsascala at around 11.45am. This storm was caused due to a dry line that was oriented northwest-southeast, denoting a sharp contrast between very humid air on one side and much drier air on the other side. During this storm it was noted that the wind was blowing from the southwest over much of Malta, with gusts up to 33.3km/h at Zebbug at 12.12pm (during the height of the storm). This definitely helped the inflow into this storm.

PHOTO TAKEN BY VANESSA PORTANIER MIFSUD