Waterspout in San Remo, Italy
© Météo Côte D'Azur - En Direct
Dramatic footage shows a whirling waterspout forming off the Italian coast before making its way inland.

The weather phenomenon was captured in the north-western Italian city of Sanremo, on the Mediterranean coast, on 1 December.

It caused damage to central and western parts of the city and the Old Port area, but reports say that no one was seriously injured.

The beach was closed on the popular Italian Riviera tourist destination, while there were also reports of shattered windows, falling chimneys and damage to vehicles.

A snow warning has also been issued for parts of Liguria, which has experienced a dramatic drop in temperatures over the past week.

Waterspouts fall into two categories: fair weather waterspouts and tornadic waterspouts, NOAA's National Weather Service explains.

"Tornadic waterspouts are tornadoes that form over water, or move from land to water," they say.

"They have the same characteristics as a land tornado. They are associated with severe thunderstorms, and are often accompanied by high winds and seas, large hail, and frequent dangerous lightning.

"If a waterspout moves onshore ... some of them can cause significant damage and injuries to people.

"Typically, fair weather waterspouts dissipate rapidly when they make landfall, and rarely penetrate far inland."