Rare Arch-shaped Cloud Over Aceh, Indonesia: Fact Check

Image of Rare Arch-shaped Cloud Over Aceh, Indonesia
Rare Arch-shaped Cloud Over Aceh, Indonesia


Rare Arch-shaped Cloud Over Aceh, Indonesia

Other Versions

Cloud shaped like an arch, appears in the sky over the city of Meulaboh in Aceh

Fact Check:

A picture and video spread wide on social media allege to show a Rare Arch-shaped Cloud cover over the city of Meulaboh in Aceh, Indonesia. They show an enormous cloud cover lying low over ground. It appears so unreal and artificial that many viewers thought it is fake news and Photoshopped imagery. The Arch-shaped cloud over Aceh is real and rare.

Arch-Shaped Cloud in Aceh, Indonesia

In morning hours of 10th August 2020, Twitter user Arief Arbianto shared a short video of the enormous cloud cover. He described it as morning’s view of clouds over the city of Meulaboh in West Aceh Regency of Indonesia. He also requested viewers to pray Meulaboh City is fine. The video spread wide on WhatsApp and Twitter among other social media platforms. You can see pictures of the rare and uncommon natural phenomenon from other angles.

The rare sight of natural phenomenon shocked and panicked the residents of Meulaboh. The rolling black clouds stretching from East to West reminded them of the Tsunami waves that hit Aceh. It appeared as if the clouds are above the ocean and ready to roll up anything beneath them. As a result, roads went deserted in the region and people prayed at home nothing unwanted should happen.

Arcus/Tsunami Cloud

Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysical Agency of Indonesia BMKG (Badan Meteorologi, Klimatologi, dan Geofisika) said it is an Arcus Cloud commonly known as Tsunami Cloud. BMKG also appealed to residents not to be in open fields and asked fishermen not to go out to sea before the clouds disappeared. Another Twitter user Agus Maulana shared a video clip of his account of the rare natural phenomenon on Monday afternoon.

An official from BMKG, Miming Saepudin explained Arcus clouds form as a result of atmospheric instability caused when air masses of different temperatures and humidity meet. On the other hand, there were rumors of impending natural disasters like Earthquakes or Tsunamis. Miming Saepudin clarified Arcus clouds have nothing to do with potential earthquakes, tsunamis or mystical things. The clouds in fact appeared very clear from 08.15 WIB, and faded gradually at 09.00 WIB (Western Indonesian Time).

Hoax or Fact:



Rare arch-shaped cloud over Aceh goes viral, sparks concern, ‘fake news’
The Appearance of ‘Tsunami Clouds’ Panic the People of Meulaboh

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Prashanth Damarla