The National Weather Service will send a team to Charlestown, New Hampshire, to investigate whether a tornado touched down on Monday.

A funnel cloud was captured by a dash cam video (WARNING: language) just before 7 p.m. that shows what appears to be a tornado forming ahead on Route 11 at the Charlestown-Claremont line and moving towards the vehicle. It then quickly dissipates as it lifts overhead.

The video shows the driver coming upon several large trees and branches knocked into the roadway.

"That's pretty compelling. It's pretty hard to say it wasn't a tornado at this point," Maura Casey, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine, told Seacoast Current.

Funnel cloud in Charlestown, NH 5/17/22
Funnel cloud in Charlestown, NH 5/17/22 (Silver & Brass via YouTube)

Kelly said a survey team will head to Charlestown on Tuesday to see the damage firsthand, confirm there was a tornado, and assign a damage rating.

"We touched base with the local emergency manager. They had collaborated other reports of a funnel cloud and reports of a potential small tornado in the area," Casey said.

Tornados are not common in New Hampshire, with none reported in 2021, according to Kelly. The Connecticut River Valley area is more likely to get them than the Seacoast.

"They tend to get more severe weather of all types. They have more unstable and favorable air masses that support severe thunderstorms. Not only that, but the terrain can channel wind in a way that can be conducive for these little spin-ups. They're not particularly strong, but the terrain can contribute to these low-end weak tornados," Kelly said.

According to the National Centers for Environmental Information's Storm Events database, the last official confirmed tornadoes in New Hampshire occurred August 22, 2020. Two tornadoes formed that day, an EF-0 over Lake Winnipesaukee near Wolfeboro, Belknap County. And another EF-0 that caused minor tree and roof damage in Central Ossipee, Carroll County.

It will be a windy day on the Seacoast on Tuesday, with the chance of a few showers and highs in the 70s.

Damage from possible tornado in Charlestown, NH 5/15/22
Damage from possible tornado in Charlestown, NH 5/15/22 (Silver & Brass via YouTube)

Dan Zarrow contributed to this report

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNH

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