A video shared on social media shows a “firenado” sweeping through Tennant Creek in Australia’s Northern Territories.
SilverBridle Contracting, a company working in the area at the time, posted the video on Facebook on 31 October and said there was “absolutely nothing we could do but sit back and watch”.
According to the US’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, this weather phenomenon occurs when heat from a wildfire rises quickly, leaving an empty space behind it. Air floods into that gap, creating an updraft that brings the fire with it.
The current bushfire season in Australia comes after several years of record-breaking floods, which followed the Black Summer bushfires in 2019-20, which themselves followed years of drought.