Brief waterspout in Tampa Bay waters - WFLA News Channel 8

Brief waterspout in Tampa Bay waters

Posted: Updated:
ST PETERSBURG, FL (WFLA) -

The fishermen along the Pinellas shoreline know how lucky downtown Tampa and the Bay area's bridges were Wednesday afternoon.

Clifton Belle and his friends watched a waterspout form in Old Tampa Bay, spinning in the middle of the water.

"Let's get out of here: That was my first thought," Belle said. "I don't play around with stuff like that. Tornadoes could toss a cow. It could definitely toss me."

Dennis Radle, who was also fishing south of the Howard Frankland, said the whole waterspout event lasted about 15 minutes.

"It was actually pretty wide," Radle said. "I guess from this view over - it was probably 10 feet wide, 15 feet wide. The waves it was making when it was sucking it up was probably another 20 feet above the water when that thing was going by."

Storm Team 8 Meteorologist Leigh Spann said it was part of a small storm cell that pushed quickly west to east around 12:38 p.m.

According to the National Weather Service, a spotter reported that the spout lifted from the water at 12:43 p.m.

The storm that produced that spout pushed northeast into South Tampa and downtown Tampa.

"We put everything back in the car and we watched it," said Belle. "We started videotaping it and it dissipated - and we got back out and started fishing again."

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