The Most Terrifying Storms in the World

The Most Terrifying Storms in the World

The Most Terrifying Storms in the World
Image Credits: Business Insider

Storms can be pretty destructive, but sometimes it’s not the destruction that makes them horrifying. Sometimes, it’s their composition that turns them into terrifying storms. On other occasions, it’s a combination of both these factors. Read on to discover what all can fall from the skies, besides ordinary rain and snow. And some other freaky weather is discussed here too.

Pillars of Flame

Pillars of Flame - Terrifying Storms

The wildfires in California got a lot of international coverage in 2018. Such wildfires are often accompanied by fire tornados. These whirlwinds are basically made from flames that emerge after sucking burning debris into their vortex of hot air. Generally, these fire whirls are small and short-lived, but that was not the case in California.

During these fires, a pillar of fire (5,500 meters high) swept through and devastated the town of the denizens of Redding. It lasted for hours and created a lot of havoc as burning flames flew around at tornado-like speeds. These flames can become as hot as 1,093o C that can cause real terrifying storms.

Hail Mingled With Fire

Hail Mingled With Fire - Terrifying Storms

In 2003, Canberra was struck by one of the most terrifying storms of Australian history. Massive lightning crashed produced a pillar of fire (10,000 meters high and 300 meters wide) that ravaged the city. In addition to that, the city was also pelted by pitch-black hail.

This hail was born from the soot and ash of the fire. They got mixed with the water vapor in the clouds to create this horrifying spectacle. If that’s not enough, the dry air down under engendered bushfires. These bushfires were brutal enough to have produced the phenomenon more than once.

Blood Rain

Blood Rain - Terrifying Storms

In July 2018, the Siberian city of Norilsk was showered with blood-red rain. This wasn’t the first time something like it had happened. In fact, the earliest accounts of “blood rain” come from ancient Greece. The rain typically acquires its distinctive color when red sand from the desert gets mixed up with it.

Technically, the United Kingdom does experience such rains several times every year but it’s generally more brownish-yellow than red. The one that hit Norilsk was caused by the rust residue from a factory. Consequently, this rain was more convincing scarlet in color.

Plagues of Frogs and Flesh

Plagues of Frogs and Flesh

The idiom “raining cats and dogs” is used quite commonly but these words don’t carry their literal meanings. However, Calgary was literally subjected to raining frogs on 4th August 1921. It is not the only instance of its kind as frog rains have been reported many times.

For instance, frogs have fallen in Japan, Hungary, and Uruguay. Similarly, some other parts of the world have been showered by fish, worms, jellyfish, and lizards. It is believed that tornadoes passing over water bodies create terrifying storms like these by sucking up the animals inside. They hurl these creatures a great distance away to leave the victims utterly bewildered.

Blood-splattered Snow

Blood-splattered Snow

Captain John Ross and his crew encountered something eerie on the Greenland coast, in May 1818. While scouring the Arctic for the Northwest Passage, they encountered some blood-splattered snow on the cliffs. The crew described the snow in the following words:

“So dark a red as to resemble port wine.”

This phenomenon is called “Watermelon Snow” and the earliest sightings actually date back to ancient Greece. The snow acquires its blood-splattered appearance when the weather is hot enough to allow the red algae to bloom within it. This also speeds up the melting process, often leaving behind eerie little blood-red pools when the snow dissipates.

Days of Darkness

Days of Darkness

On the morning of 19th May 1780, people across New England and eastern Canada literally experienced the days of darkness. They watched in confusion as the sky began to darken, such that it was dark as midnight at noon. The phenomenon was not caused by an eclipse or volcanic eruption. Hence, the cause remains uncertain.

There is one other recorded instance of a similar occurrence. It became black as midnight at noon in Alberta too, in 1950. On that occasion, a distant wildfire was responsible for the darkness. It emitted enough smoke that it was able to block out the sun.

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