A tornado touched down briefly in Queens and Brooklyn Saturday morning, destroying property, disrupting plans and terrifying residents all over the city.
A black tunnel cloud accompanied by howling winds screamed into south Brooklyn and Queens at around 11 a.m., with reports of the potent storm hitting the ground on the Rockaway Peninsula and Carnarsie.
“I saw a big gray cloud coming and ran to my basement with my son,” said Diane Tye, 36, an office manager from Breezy Point who scooped up her son Dylan, 2, and ran to her house when she saw the tunnel cloud approach.
“It was very scary,” the breathless mom told the News just minutes after the storm passed, adding, “People around here are freaked out.”
The unusual storm ripped siding from homes and threw patio furniture high into the sky in Tye’s quiet beach neighborhood. Then the twister passed in just a few minutes, leaving broken windows and trees in its wake.
“I saw the whirling winds carrying things past my window. There was furniture and a surfboard flying through the air,” said Alice Marie, a retired public relations agent from Breezy Point who witnessed the storm from her living room.
It’s unclear if anyone was injured in the tornado, but it stopped traffic on the Belt Parkway and caused a stir in Carnarsie, Brooklyn, where residents reported seeing the funnel cloud touch down.
The storm also drenched the U.S Open in Queens, dumping showers that continued past 11 a.m., when Olympic champion Andy Murray was supposed to begin his match against 2010 Wimbledon runner-up Tomas Berdych. Play was postponed.
Wind and water also blasted Fashion Week in Manhattan, sending fashion assistants to protect racks of clothes backstage from the sudden downpours.