SEBASTOPOL (CBS SF) – A KPIX Weather Watcher spotted a funnel cloud from Sebastopol Thursday morning.

Kathy Munch saw the cloud as she walked out her door at 5:54 a.m. She was looking north towards Lake Sonoma.

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“With the viewer reporting rotation, we feel that it is suspicious and possibly a funnel,” National Weather Service meteorologist Charles Bell said. “If it is actually a funnel, it would be very weak.”

KPIX Weather Anchor Roberta Gonzales checked the cloud with radar at the time and discovered there was a band of light rain moving through the area.  “I realized it was certainly possible the cloud would classify as a funnel cloud,” she said.

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The photo was submitted to the National Weather Service for further review and Gonzales says it has since been classified as a very weak funnel.

Later Thursday there is a strong possibility of isolated thunderstorms containing hail and lightning in the Bay Area, especially this afternoon. The KPIX 5 newsroom received several reports of hail in the Fremont area Thursday morning.

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Potential of thunderstorms is focused on the East and South Bay, a thunderstorm could pop up anywhere due to the unsettled weather pattern moving through the region. As of 3 p.m., most of the thunder and lightning activity was centered in the Sierra, more than 100 miles from our region.

“We are on the western edge of the unstable air, so the places most likely to see scattered rain showers this afternoon/evening are inland sections of Alameda, Contra Costa, and Santa Clara Counties,” said KPIX 5’s Paul

As of 3 p.m., the highest recorded rain total in the Bay Area was in Danville at .10 inch.


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