GOLDEN BEACH (CBSMiami) – There was a scary sight off the coast of South Florida Wednesday when a huge waterspout appeared off the coast of Golden Beach.
Video from Don Kanal shows the large, mature waterspout coming on shore as a brief tornado near Golden Beach around 1:20 p.m.
The spray ring at the bottom turns from white to tan as the waterspout moves ashore. Tree branches and even a power flash can be seen before the tornado dissipates a few minutes after coming ashore.
The National Weather Service confirms the waterspout went on land and became an EF-0 tornado with maximum winds reaching 85 miles per hour. NWS confirms it traveled for about a half-mile on Golden Beach heading north to County Line Road just east of A1A.
“When we saw it come through, we both, me and my partner, we just took and ran into the corner,” Kevin Gore said.“It pretty much looked like the sky was all black and it was dark.”
He told us he works as a COVID-19 beach safety ambassador.
According to the Golden Beach City Manager Alex Diaz, there was minor vegetation damage with some fallen trees, but no structural damage and no injuries.
The waterspout was also captured by Twitter user Jazz Santana who spotted it right outside his window while at work in Aventura.
— Jazz Santana (@jazzsantana) August 19, 2020
On his Twitter post, he wrote “Pretty impressive” and “Jumanji level up!”
Another Twitter user posted this video.
Tornado just appeared in Aventura 😯 pic.twitter.com/SJzoGBXt4Z
— Teslarg (@SucherMiami) August 19, 2020
Waterspouts are common in South Florida waters as the smooth ocean surface allows thunderstorm updrafts to pull any wind swirls up into the cloud base.
Chopper 4 was overhead as people recovered outside furniture that was tossed into the ocean. On the ground, there were branches that were snapped off from trees. And even broken gates.
Golden Beach Town leaders sent us pictures of branches and tree limbs blocking sidewalks, driveways and roadways.
Even though this is considered a weak tornado, it was a strong EF-O. Town leaders say all of south Florida should remove dead branches and tree limbs, especially since its hurricane season.
While waterspouts look like tornadoes, they are generally much weaker, last for a short time, and unless they move over land, are only dangerous if they happen to pass over a boat. They generally form and disappear in a relatively small area. Boaters are warned to navigate away from heavy rain where the waterspouts may appear.