A fairly unusual meteorological phenomenon hit Edinburgh waking up the residents through last Friday’s night. Watch the video!
Frightened Edinburgh residents contacted the emergency services when they were woken in the early hours by loud explosions they feared were the result of a plane crash or a building collapsing.
Police explained that their rude awakening had been caused by the phenomenon known as “thundersnow”, which happens when thunderstorms form in wintry conditions, giving rise to heavy downpours of snow.
The Police Scotland control room tweeted shortly after 5am on Friday: “We have received a number of calls regarding people concerned about explosions heard. Please do not be alarmed, we are currently experiencing thunder and lightning.”
Two unusually loud thunder claps were heard over the Scottish capital, terrifying pets, setting off car alarms and waking sleeping residents, who likened the noise to that of a sonic boom or explosion.
The snow caused disruption across the region, including the closure of the Queensferry Crossing.
The Met Office explains that thundersnow is unusual because it can happen only in a few months of the year. “When thundersnow occurs at night the lightning appears brighter–- this is because the light reflects off the snowflakes.
It adds: “Interestingly, the snow contained within the thunderstorm acts to dampen the sound of the thunder. While the thunder from a typical thunderstorm might be heard many miles away, the thunder during a thundersnow event will only be heard if you are within two to three miles of the lightning”.
Not all residents were disturbed, however. The award-winning crime writer Ian Rankin expressed his disappointment at sleeping through the incident.
Source: The Guardian