New storm warning after tornado in Oxfordshire


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The Independent Online

Britain could be braced for more thunder and lightning after a “special” type of storm, which started in Wiltshire, swept across the country yesterday, bringing with it a tornado to some areas.

Forecasters said there was a "definite chance" of further thunderstorm activity after an unusual "supercell" storm travelled through the south Midlands on Monday afternoon, bringing rain, large hailstones, and a tornado in Oxfordshire.

The thunderstorm started in Wiltshire, and moved across Oxfordshire - where a tornado was reported in several places including Bicester, Eynsham, and Kidlington - then moved to Buckinghamshire.

Richard Glazer, 40, drove through the tornado with his wife and son on the A34 near Kidlington, Oxfordshire.

"As we drove into it the trees were blowing left to right and as we got through it they were blowing the other way," he said.

"It wasn't particularly big but it was amazing to see the change in the environment. It was grey and a bit blurry and then to be hit by something like that. You suddenly realise the force of nature, it's incredible."

Forecasters said it was almost certainly a tornado, and the storm that caused it was thought to be a supercell storm - more commonly seen in the US than the UK.

Brendan Jones, forecaster at MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said it was unlikely there would be another supercell storm in the coming week, as they require very specific atmospheric conditions.

However heavy rain has been predicted for much of the country, which could bring more thunder and lightning.

Mr Jones said: "It's going to remain unsettled, there will be rain and showers around and there is a definite chance of more thunderstorm activity."

*And it isn't just the UK experiencing unusual weather. The video, above, left, shows a tornado tearing off roofs and uprooting trees in Tsukuba, north-east of Tokyo, Japan.