A video capturing the tornado that swept through Armidale last week has been watched thousands of times on social media and television - to the surprise of the local who filmed it.
Streets all over the city suffered damage with hail and a tornado flipping cars, slicing through power lines, and trashing scores of homes shortly after 10pm on Thursday.
Lou Streeting was watching the storm with her family from a high vantage point which gave them a bird's-eye view, when she saw a green flash low in the northern sky.
"My partner Marty commented that it looked as though part of a tree had been lifted up into the air," Ms Streeting said.
"I started to film the storm, and there was a second green flash, and the power went out."
The next flash of lightning illuminated the tornado, and Ms Streeting's partner calmly suggested the family move inside the house.
Although the tornado path was only about three blocks away from the Streeting family home, they suffered no damage to their property.
"It was quite frightening, but we are extremely lucky," Ms Streeting said.
"I feel upset for the many people who felt the brunt of the tornado and whose homes and cars were damaged or destroyed.
"I can't image how terrifying it would have been to be in its path. It only took a few minutes for it to carve a path across the town."
Ms Streeting immediately called her mother as she watched the tornado travel towards the street where she lived.
"Fortunately, she was fine," Ms Streeting said.
"My uncle and aunt live around the corner from my mum, and they weren't so lucky."
An eternal optimist, Ms Streeting's uncle dismissed his badly damaged roof the next day and quipped that he now had a trampoline and a roller door that he didn't have before the tornado.
"It has been amazing to witness Armidale's wonderful community spirit and see people pitching in to help those affected by the tornado," Ms Streeting said.
Initially, she posted the video to her private Facebook account, but after a friend asked if Ms Streeting could make it public so it could be shared, the eyewitness footage went viral.
"At breakfast, my son told me that my video had 'gone crazy' on the internet," Ms Streeting said.
"The post has now had over 35,000 views on Facebook alone and has been aired on all of the major television news channels and lots and lots of online sites."
Ms Streeting is a University of New England Ph.D. student whose work is helping to conserve the threatened Bell's turtle.
But now, her family and friends call her a 'stormchaser'. And although she has had requests from people wishing to license the video, Ms Streeting said she has no intention of doing that.
"I am more than happy for people to use it and just credit me," she said.
"It really did get a lot of attention locally, nationally, and overseas. I am surprised that I seem to have been the only person to capture it on video.
"I certainly wasn't intending to film a tornado."
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