|Tents and other debris are sent aloft during a whirlwind|
at the Rose Parade site in Pasadena, CA today.
A whirlwind hit a Fanfest area today in the runup for the parade. You can see it in the video, below.
The video is titled "Tornado At the Rose Bowl" but it was definitely not a tornado. Notice the clear skies. You need a strong, severe, rotating thunderstorm to get a tornado going.
This was a dust devil. But since there was no dust handy, it was a nearly invisible whirlwind until it started hitting stuff.
Dust devils or whirlwinds are usually pretty harmless. They are a tight swirl of wind that usually does little more than blow some leaves around. You can walk into one and be just fine.
Sometimes, dust devils can get strong, almost as strong as a weak tornado. They can, on rare occasions like today's in Pasadena, cause a bit of damage.
It was chilly and windy in Pasadena today, but the sun was out. The sun heated the ground, and the air right near the ground.
Warm air is lighter than cold air, so the air that warmed up near the ground started to rise. The rising air got caught by the strong crosswinds, that formed a tight circle.
So you got the whirlwind, or dustless dust devil that you got today.
There were reports of four minor injuries from this.
But at least it wasn't as bad as a real tornado.
Here's the video: