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Lake Michigan waterspouts put on a show [VIDEO]

Two tornado-like water spouts formed on Lake Michigan Thursday, posing little danger but prompting questions from curious onlookers.
Posted By GABRIELLE LEVY, UPI.com   |   Sept. 13, 2013 at 12:03 PM
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Two tornado-like water spouts formed on Lake Michigan Thursday, posing little danger but prompting questions from curious onlookers.

The waterspouts, funnel clouds that often form on the Great Lakes in the fall when cold air blows over warmer lakewater, are usually much weaker than land tornadoes.

Thursday's, which appeared off the western coast of Lake Michigan, north of Chicago, lasted about 15 minutes and caused no damage.

“We did get a number of calls from people who wanted to know what was going on,” said Kenosha, Wisc., Police Capt. Tom Hansche.

Students in Kenosha Unified School District began emergency weather precautions but returned to class after about 20 minutes.

In 2012, a record 186 reports of waterspouts were recorded, thanks to the extra hot summer in the Great Lakes region warming up the water, but social media makes reporting of quick-to-disappear spouts more likely.

Check out the incredible photos of the waterspouts (above) by Chicago-area journalist Gulu Saiyed, and the video, below, of the funnels twisting around each other.

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