NWS confirms funnel cloud spotted over West Spokane
SPOKANE, Wash. — The National Weather Service is reporting that, based on eyewitness observations, a funnel cloud appeared over West Spokane as a rain storm moved across the region Friday afternoon.
The funnel cloud appeared at 3:28 pm.
John Livingston with the National Weather Service’s Spokane office confirmed it was a funnel cloud, based on video shot by KXLY 4 News as well as an additional eyewitness report from the area.
Livingston said that as of now there is no evidence the funnel cloud touched down, but the video showed the cyclonic circulation associated with tornadic activity.
If residents report damage in the area the NWS will send a meteorologist out to the site to determine if the damage was caused by a tornado touching down.
The funnel cloud was part of a fast-moving storm front that moved across the Inland Northwest Friday afternoon, bringing with it heavy rainfall and quarter-sized hail in downtown Spokane and up on the South Hill, according to eyewitness observations to the NWS.
In addition to the funnel cloud over West Spokane, eyewitness Andrew Kalin observed a tornado in the vicinity of Highway 2 and Hayford Road near Airway Heights Friday afternoon.
The storm was heading eastward at approximately 20 mph, bringing with it the threat of damaging winds, along with hail and heavy rainfall.
Avista Utilities reported as of 4:30 pm that 2,434 customers were out of power due to 32 active outages across the region. The largest concentration of outages was up in the Nine Mile Falls community, where an outage was reported at 3:25 pm, affecting 595 customers.
Across the region:
Flash flooding hit in Okanogan County along SR-153. The road is closed near milepost 26 due to mud and debris approximately 100 yards wide across the roadway.
Flash flooding was also observed in the vicinity of Methow.
Near Brewster flash flooding has washed out a section of Indian Dan Canyon Road near SR 97.
Heavy rainfall was reported in Priest River and Newport while hail was reported in Spokane, Mead and Millwood.
Possible tornado was reported two miles east of Airway Heights north and west of the US2 / Hayford Road intersection. The National Weather Service also received two separate reports of a tornado north of Coulee City.
Video of tornado near Airway Heights:Tornado spotted in Airway Heights