GEORGE TOWN, April 1 — At least 50 houses in Tanjung Tokong here were damaged after they were hit by a waterspout and heavy rains this afternoon.

A Penang Civil Defence Force spokesman said the waterspout from the direction of the sea entered the Tanjung Tokong area ripping the roofs of houses and felling several trees at 1.35pm.

“Until to date, no loss of life or injury is reported in the 15-minute storm. We are currently busy clearing the debris from houses which were ripped off by the storm,” he said here.

Meanwhile, a resident Nona Khalid, 75, said she was waiting for her two grandchildren who were returning home from school when the storm suddenly blew and she could see the waterspout approaching her house.

“The sound of the wind was deafening and I saw part of the roof of my house being flown away by the wind..indeed it was very scary and took place for the first time in the 50 years I have been staying here,” she said when met at her house.

Another victim Aisyah Hashim, 64, she was preparing to perform the zohor prayers when the incident took place and she immediately left the house fearing that the roof or beams of the house would fall on her.

Fried banana trader, Zaleha Mat Zain, 52, said she managed to run to the mosque area and helplessly saw her stall destroyed by the storm.

“I am thankful that I am safe. The materials for my business such as banana and tapioca were damaged by the storm,” she said, adding over 10 other stalls were also destroyed by the storm.

A food trader Azizah Azizan, 63, said she was preparing to send her ‘laksa’ (Malaysian noodle dish of Chinese origin) to her stall when the waterspout struck.

“From my house which is located near the market, I saw my stall being blown away by the wind. I will donate the ‘laksa’ I prepare to the mosque as doing business today is out of the question,” she said. — Bernama