ByAngelo Delos Trinos, writer at
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Angelo Delos Trinos

Admit it. If you're one of the many people who has seen one of the movies from the Channel there was a moment where you wondered if the titular weather catastrophe could happen in real life. As silly and improbable as a Sharknado is, some people still held on to their dreams of one day becoming a B-grade action movie hero who fought airborne sharks propelled by tornadoes.

But given how the year 2017 seems to be unfolding so far, it shouldn't be that shocking to find out that a the precursor to a Sharknado did happen. It happened in - a continent that has since become an online legend thanks to its seemingly over-the-top brushes with death on a daily basis.

Sharknado: For Reals

[Credit: Syfy]
[Credit: Syfy]

The state of Queensland, Australia was ravaged by Cyclone Debbie - a weather system with speeds reaching 160 miles per hour that also brought over 15 inches of rain. The cyclone left multiple parts of the continent flooded, and authorities have evacuated more than 40, 000 people to higher ground.

As the rains and winds subsided, it was discovered that the debris left in Debbie's path included a five foot bull shark.

Check out the official Tweet from the Queensland Fire And Emergency department below, warning citizens about land-sharks.

Though no one was able to capture footage of how exactly the shark landed on a puddle in the middle of the road, it's hard not to dismiss the possibility that the shark was sucked up by the cyclone before being unceremoniously dropped.

Authorities have since stated that the shark could have been washed up on shore before first responders conducting damage reports found it, but the internet was quick to conclude that Australia did in fact witness a real-life Sharknado.

In the movies, the titular Sharknado occurs when a cyclone passes by the ocean and sucks up a bunch of sharks before making landfall on typically populated cities located near the shore. Property damage, deaths by flying sharks and a whole lot of insanity ensues.

Life Imitates Shark

The phenomenon of raining animals is a real, but rare, meteorological occurrence. Over the course of human history, accounts of rain storms that dropped animals like frogs, jellyfishes, and even spiders from the sky have been recorded. These strange events were once considered to be religious omens, though science has since come up with multiple possible explanations for Sharknado-styled occurrences.

Scientists have theorized that strong bodies of wind or tornadic waterspouts are responsible for picking up normally flightless animals and carrying them over long distances, but no scientist has been able to see this event firsthand. Prior to the Australian sharknado, the largest recorded animal to fall from the sky was a fish - contrary to the popular adage about cats and dogs.

[Credit: Syfy]
[Credit: Syfy]

Sharknadoes, on the other hand, are theoretically plausible, but would need a lot of specific scenarios to happen beforehand. Among these, a sharknado would need a tornado that is at the least a Category 2 (or F2) with wind speeds of almost 157 mph to make a great white shark that could weigh at least 1,500 lbs airborne.

Cyclone Debbie was recorded to have wind speeds of 160 mph, making it theoretically possible for the weather system to have picked up the bullshark before dropping it on a road.

Australians have garnered an online reputation for their stories of wildlife encounters that anyone who doesn't live down under couldn't believe. Now, Australians can be proud to say that their homeland is the first place on Earth to have been visited by the roaring rampage of nature that is the Sharknado.

Watch the trailer for Sharknado 4 below.

What is your plan of action in case of a Sharknado?


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