Downburst causes damage in West Mobile - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Downburst causes damage in West Mobile

MOBILE, AL (WALA) -

On Saturday night, strong storms moved into West Mobile and quickly produced damaging winds.

Power flashes lit up the night sky as the storms moved through. This was most likely caused by a downburst.

Downbursts are a product of strong storms that have too much rain and even hail stuck up in the clouds.

Eventually, the rain is too heavy and it falls rapidly to the ground.

Once it hits the ground, it spreads out and increases the winds at the ground.

There are two types of downbursts: microbursts and macrobursts.

A microburst is small and only lasts for about five minutes, but can produce winds around 160 miles per hour.

A macroburst is much larger in scale, many times over two and a half miles. It can last for 30 minutes and produce winds around 130 miles per hour.

Downbursts can happen throughout the year, even in summer during afternoon thunderstorms.

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