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Rob Explains: Tornado shaped cloud hovers over Lafayette

Posted at 10:24 PM, Nov 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-04 23:24:31-05

A strange cloud reached up in the sky over Lafayette and a few viewers wanted to know, "Why does this cloud look like a tornado?"

According to KATC Chief Meteorologist Rob Perillo, the tornado-like cloud is part of a jet contrail. Jet contrails are trails of vapor, usually line-shaped clouds produced by aircraft engine exhaust or air pressure changes.

In the pictures shared with KATC, the jet exhaust is shown sloping upward most likely as the jet either entered or exited a moisture layer in the atmosphere where there is no contrail, as the air was too dry to display the cloud.

The way the contrails were shaped, it was very reminiscent of a tornado but all was calm in the skies over Lafayette on Monday afternoon.

Thanks to those who shared photos of the skies with KATC.