CEBU CITY, Philippines—At least 85 houses and 13 motorized outrigger boats called pumpboats were damaged on Friday morning when a tornado struck four coastal villages in the municipality of Jagna in Bohol.
A report from the Jagna Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said the whirlwind hit the villages of Can-upao, Bunga Mar, Cantagay and Ipil about 11 a.m. during a heavy downpour.
The report did not say how many families were affected, indicating only that the victims were forced to stay with relatives.
At least P1.3 million worth of property was destroyed as the wind storm also damaged 13 pumpboats on the coast.
Bohol Governor Edgar Chatto, Vice Governor Concepcion Lim and personnel from Department of Social Welfare and Development went to the affected areas to distribute relief goods.
Vicente Orias of the Jagna disaster management council, said some residents saw a black funnel cloud in the sky before it touched ground and unleashed its fury. Houses that were made of light materials were blown down or had their roofs blown away, he added.
Weather specialist Boy Artiaga of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration based on Mactan Island, Cebu, said the description of the storm given by the municipal disaster council fit that of a tornado.
Artiaga said tornadoes can happen because of thick thunderstorm clouds spawned by the southwest monsoon and a low pressure area off Eastern Visayas.
Barangay Can-upao was the worst hit with at least 43 houses destroyed or damaged, followed by Bunga Mar, 39; Cantagay, 2; and Ipil, 1.