At least five tornadoes touched down in Denver on Wednesday, causing hailstorms, floods, and forcing dozens of flight delays or cancellations at the airport.
Some flights were grounded, and incoming flights had to be diverted because of the severe storm that struck the city.
Denver International Airport spokesman Heath Montgomery said that about 40 flights were diverted to Colorado Springs. Some parts of the airport ground were part of the tornado watch, however the terminal was not affected by the alert.
Plows were clearing the runways and delays were about 90 minutes. The airport is now reopened.
Even though Denver is not located in what is known as Tornado Alley, which includes northern Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska, it sees several tornadoes each year.
In the eastern Denver suburbs of Aurora, residents had to duck for cover when at least three tornadoes hit the area within a half an hour, and two other suspected tornadoes hit other areas nearby, meteorologist Jim Kalina of the National Weather Service’s Boulder office said.
Kalina added that a tornado watch was in effect for Denver until 8 pm local time. However, no more tornadoes were expected.
“Denver’s kind of in the clear right now unless something else develops,” he said of more possible tornadoes.
Some incredible photos have been shared on Twitter. Check them out:
— Phillip Marquez (@L1Wulf) May 21, 2014
— 7NEWS Denver Channel (@DenverChannel) May 21, 2014
Multiple tornadoes around the Denver, CO area… pic.twitter.com/fWOI79X3Om
— That Ordinary Guy (@ThatOrdinaryGuy) May 21, 2014
— Richard Fleming (@FlemingSport) May 21, 2014
— The Denver Post (@denverpost) May 21, 2014
The second part of May and the early part of June are when most tornadoes occur in Denver, caused by winds crossing each other in the region, according to Weather Service meteorologist Scott Entrekin.
After the sirens stopped blazing and the all clear was given, some residents came out to find up to six-inches of ice from the hailstorm and flooded streets.
Another round of severe weather, including possible tornadoes, is expected to affect the Denver metro area on Thursday.
[Image via Twitter]