By News-Register staff • 

Funnel clouds possible this afternoon

The National Weather Service has issued a special weather statement warning that funnel clouds may develop this afternoon. It said that funnel clouds have been reported near Hillsboro and Albany, but neither appears to have touched down.

"The air mass over Northwest Oregon and Southwest Washington is unstable this afternoon and evening due to the recent passage of a cold front," the statement warns. "This pattern can produce what is called cold air funnel clouds. These funnels do not usually touch the ground. However, if they do touch the ground they are dangerous and can be damaging.

"The threat of funnel clouds will continue for until around 5 p.m. but is expected to dramatically decrease after 5 p.m. as instability diminishes."

Tornadoes are rare in Oregon, but do occur, when funnel clouds touch down. In June of 2013, one caused a scare and property damage in McMinnville, tearing the roofs off some buildings.

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