Tag Archive | dust storm

Severe dust storm hits Allahabad, India

Dust Storm Alert

Allahabad residents shuffle through a severe dust storm on June 12, 2015 that tore through vast swathes of north India amid a deadly heat wave.
Courtesy of citizenside.com

Severe dust-storm causes blackout in parts of Karachi, Pakistan

Dust Storm Alert

A severe dust-storm paralyzed the Karachi Airport temporarily on Wednesday and also caused 50 feeders of KElectric (KE) to trip, causing a blackout in parts of the metropolis.
 
According to KElectric spokesman Usama Qureshi the dust-storm caused 50 out of 1400 feeders to trip. The spokesman added that strong winds caused billboards and trees to crash with power lines causing further outages.
 
Qureshi added, that KE teams were working on ground to restore power to consumers. He appealed to citizens to be wary of broken electricity wires and requested that any breakages be reported promptly to the distribution company’s hotline 118.
Courtesy of thenews.com.pk

Severe dust storm kills a child and injures 2 in Gausana village, India

Dust Storm Alert

A minor died while two others were injured when a wall collapsed on them during a dust storm this evening at Gausana village. 
 
The accident occured when the three were taking shelter besides a wall during the dust storm in Jamuna Paar area and it collapsed on them killing Abhay Kumar (12), SDM Chandra Vijai Singh said. 
 
The injured, Tilak Singh and Urmila Devi, were rushed to a hospital, Vijai added. 
 
This is the third storm in Mahaban Tahsil area in a fortnight, the SDM added.
Courtesy of business-standard.com

A VAST dust storm strikes NSW Australia

Dust Storm Alert

A VAST dust storm travelling across NSW is dissipating, with visibility improving across the state.
 
THE dust storm, which originated from the Victorian Mallee and southwest NSW, blew over the Illawarra region and Sydney on Wednesday morning causing air pollution levels to spike.
 
It also tinged the sky a hazy orange colour.
 
Driven by south to south-westerly winds behind a cold front, the Bureau of Meteorology says the dust is gradually disappearing and should be all but gone on Thursday.
 
“The wind is continuing to blow from the west so any remaining dust, if it doesn’t disperse beyond detection, will blow out to sea,” a BoM spokesman told AAP.
 
While another cold front is expected to clip the southwest of NSW overnight, the spokesman said it’s not likely to raise any major amounts of dust.
 
“It will be basically clear skies throughout most of the state on Thursday,” he said.
 
“This is a natural event that has unfortunately hit at a time when cultivation is underway for winter crops,” said Dr John Leys, from the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage’s DustWatch program.
 
Swan Hill resident Deanna Dewhirst said there were barely any cars or people about on Wednesday.
 
“It was really windy. In town, it was like it was a Sunday.”
Courtesy of news.com.au

Severe dust storm kills 14 people in Uttar Pradesh, India

Severe dust storm kills 14 people in Uttar Pradesh
The severe dust storm that hit many parts of Uttar Pradesh on Friday has left behind a trail of devastation and death and officials on Saturday confirmed death of more than 14 people.
 
Besides, over two dozen people were injured in the storm, the officials said.
 
In Lucknow and neighbouring areas, eight people lost their lives, 320 hoardings were ripped apart and power transmission lines snapped, leading to power outages of more than 20 hours at many places.
 
Harvest, mainly of wheat which was lying in the fields has also been damaged extensively, officials informed while adding that this has added to the already cup full of woes of farmers following heavy rains and hail storm last week.
 
Mango harvest has also taken a beating in Kakori and Malihabad mango belts neighbouring Lucknow.
 
Heavy rainfall has been reported since Friday night in Agra, Bareilly, Sitapur and some parts of western Uttar Pradesh.
 
More such weather phenomenon are likely to occur over the weekend, the state Met department has predicted.
 
Regional Met director J.P. Gupta said that the dust storm was a local phenomena which had developed due to “local heating”.
 
“There has been extreme heat at some places while at some places the mercury is down by few notches and this yawning gap has led to this cyclonic circulation,” he added.
 
The Met office has predicted rainfall in some parts of the state on Saturday and Sunday.
Courtesy of indiatvnews.com

Severe dust storm goes off the scale in Beijing

Dust Storm Alert

Capital caught by surprise as meters fail to record severity of air pollution
Air pollution levels in Beijing were so high they went off the Air Quality Index system scale yesterday as the capital was hit by the year’s first severe dust storm.
 
By noon nearly all Chinese government monitoring stations were recording AQI readings of 500, the nominal maximum of the scale. While the monitoring system at the US embassy in Beijing records AQI readings that are in the so-called Beyond Index – in January it recorded 545 – no readings were available yesterday owing to equipment failure.
 
Chinese internet users referred to the phenomenon as bao biao, or “busted meters”.
 
The problem occurs when at least one type of pollutant exceeds the maximum amount that can be used in the AQI calculation. This time, relatively large fine particulate matter (PM) appeared to be the problem.
 
Many areas in the capital recorded nearly 1,000 micrograms of PM10 (particles 10 micrometres in diameter or less) per cubic metre of air, but most also recorded fewer than 100 micrograms of PM2.5 (of 2.5 micrometres or less), official data said.
Tourists visit Beijing's Jingshan Park, near the Forbidden City, during yesterday's severe dust storm. Photo: ImagineChina
Tourists visit Beijing Jingshan Park, near the Forbidden City, during yesterday’s severe dust storm. Photo: ImagineChina
Dust storms often hit Beijing and other parts of northern China in the spring, when strong winds from the northwest carry in dust and sand from the Gobi desert in Inner Mongolia.
 
Yet in recent years the frequency and severity of dust storms has decreased. Experts attribute this to climate change and deliberate human intervention, such as the creation of artificial forests in many places along the storms’ typical routes.
 
Yesterday’s dust storm caught many people by surprise. “I dared not open my car windows even for a second,” said resident Li Chen, who had been visiting relatives’ graves with her family. “There was dust everywhere and the sky was so brown my children refused to get out of the car.
 
“But I am not sure whether it is worse than smog. The air was dirty but it did not smell as bad as the days with high PM2.5.”
 
Beijing officials told Beijing News that a dust storm in Mongolia on Friday might have contributed to the high AQI level.
Many areas in Beijing recorded nearly 1,000 micrograms of PM10 per cubic metre of air
Courtesy of South China Morning Post

Severe Sandstorm Hits United Arab Emirates

Dust storm reduces the visibility of motorists on Dubai roads. Photo by Ahmad Ardity
The UAE awoke this morning to a severe sandstorm, with strong winds blowing up sand and dust.
 
Social media messages were going out early with commuters and officials urging motorists to drive carefully.
 
Rainfall is also expected today and tomorrow across parts of the UAE, with the wet weather also blowing in fresh winds that will raise dust and sand over open areas and reduce visibility.
The country’s weather bureau has warned that visibility will be further dampened by the onset of early morning and late night fog, with Wednesday being particularly significant in the western internal areas of the UAE.
 
The National Center for Meteorology and Seismology (NCMS) has said that the change in weather will also bring about a noticeable drop in the mercury, blowing in the chill after last week’s spike in temperatures.
Motorist drives through a dust storm at Al Khail road in Dubai . Photo by Patrick Castillo
Elaborating on the wet conditions, the NCMS said‎: “Wednesday morning will see rainfall in parts, with the cloud amount increasing at times, especially to the north and the east, with a chance of some rain to extend over internal areas till Thursday morning.”
 
The partly cloudy and dusty weather will also mark a drop in temperatures to the west of the country, with the overcast climate ready to clear by Thursday afternoon.
“The relative humidity will increase over internal and coastal areas during the night and early morning time, with the probability of fog‎ over western internal areas, on Wednesday in specific,” the NCMS added.
 
The weather bureau has issued a warning for drivers to proceed with caution owing to the drop in visibility due to fog and rain, along with fishermen and surfers being warned of rough seas over the next 48 hours, especially the Arabian Gulf and the Oman Sea.
Dust storm in Dubai . Photo by Patrick Castillo
Courtesy of Emirates247

Dust storm to continue for 3 days, rain likely in Muscat, Oman

Dust Storm Alert

MUSCAT Dust storm is likely to continue for the next three days across the Sultanate and there are chances of isolated rain along Muscat coast in the next two days, according to the Met office.
 
The dust storm combined with soaring temperature led to the calling off of the fifth stage of the Tour of Oman on Saturday. Initially it was decided to shorten the 151-km stage from Al Sawadi Beach to the Ministry of Housing to 100 km. But with the dust storm and temperature going beyond 40 degrees Celsius in some places, organisers decided to call off the stages.
 
The rising dust storm over the next few days would affect visibility, said a Met official who added that the Public Authority for Civil Aviation (PACA) had cautioned people to keep windows closed and also stay indoors and step out only in case of urgency. Officials also suggested that people cover their faces, preferable with a muzzle. 
 
The dust storm would lead to a rise in temperature and on Saturday, Muscat recorded a maximum temperature of 36 degree Celsius. People were also advised to avoid driving during a dust storm. 
 
The skies would be partly cloudy over the northern parts over the next two days with chances of isolated rain, occasional thundershowers, over governorate of Musandam, the coastal areas of Sea of Oman and Al Hajar mountain ranges.
 
The sea would be rough along Musandam and the Sea of Oman coasts with maximum wave height of 3 metres.
Courtesy of Oman Tribune

Huge dust storm in Bahrain triggers rush to hospital

A huge dust storm blew over Bahrain yesterday causing more than 200 people to seek medical treatment.
 
Doctors at Salmaniya Medical Complex (SMC) were bombarded with cases throughout the day as asthma patients and the elderly struggled to cope with the high levels of dust in the air, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
 
The storm also adversely affected driving conditions as a thick blanket of dust settled over the country.
 
Traffic police told the GDN that 80 accidents had been reported from 6am to 4pm, far higher than the rate on an average day.
 
However, no major delays were reported at Bahrain International Airport – with most flights departing on time despite visibility falling to as low as 600 metres in some areas because of Shamal winds from the north-west, according to a Civil Aviation Affairs meteorology affairs official.
 
The Meteorological Directorate has cautioned that the dust haze is set to continue today, with strong winds possible.
 
The Coastguard has also urged seafarers to be on their guard because of high winds and dust.
Courtesy of TradeArabia News Service

Apocalyptic flooding as wettest day ever recorded in Phoenix, USA

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It’s been an interesting few days in Phoenix, Arizona. A huge dust storm — known as a “haboob” — blanketed the area on Saturday, blowing thick sand on wind gusts between 25 to 40 miles per hour. And Monday was the wettest day in the city’s recorded history, breaking a 75-year-old record for rainfall.
 
It was only 9:30 a.m. on Monday when the rainfall record was broken, with Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport reporting 3.29 inches of rain since midnight, according to Phoenix’s local CBS affiliate. That surpassed the previous daily record of 2.91 inches, the most rain since Phoenix began record-keeping in 1895. As of publication, more than 4 inches of rain had fallen so far in Phoenix.
 
The rare heavy rainfall led to flooding that inundated freeways and stranded drivers on the side of the road. As The Weather Channel notes, the desert terrain surrounding Phoenix is already incapable of absorbing a lot of water — a situation that gets even worse when heavy rainfall hits the concrete-laden city, which also can’t absorb water.
Left: A wall of dust moves across a freeway in Phoenix, Saturday afternoon, Sept. 6. Right: A truck creates a wake as its driver tries to navigate a severely flooded street as heavy rains pour down Monday, Sept. 8, 2014, in Phoenix.
The storm, brought on by tropical moisture from the former Hurricane Norbert, brought more rain than Phoenix typically sees in an entire monsoon season, the National Weather Service excitedly tweeted on Monday. The American Southwest’s monsoon season generally lasts from July until mid-September.
 
Monsoon seasons not only bring rains, though — they also bring dust storms, or “haboobs.” Phoenix sees several haboobs every year, driven by strong winds from a moving thunderstorm that blow up dry desert sand.
 
“The best way to explain a haboob is to say it is a tsunami of sand, in the sense that there is no stopping it or outrunning it,” Fernanda Santos of the New York Times wrote in August. “It is a supreme spectacle.”
View image on Twitter
For the last 40 years in the American Southwest, dust storms like Saturday’s in Phoenix have been steadily on the rise, according to a University of Colorado study published last year and funded by the National Science Foundation. The increases in dust, according to the study, can be attributed to a combination of factors — more storms with high winds, more drought, land use changes, and even more construction projects.
 
At least one peer-reviewed paper has suggested that as temperatures rise in the Southwest due to climate change, more dust could be created. Alyson Kenward described it well for Climate Central: “Hotter average temperatures mean the region could become even drier than it is already, making it harder for perennial grasses and plants to thrive. Without these grasses to keep the soil intact, it’s a lot easier for wind to pick the dust up off the ground.”
 
As for extreme precipitation and flooding events, scientists more readily agree that those can be made worse by climate change.
 
The way this happens is relatively simple: As carbon dioxide is emitted from burning fossil fuels and destroying tropical forests, it traps heat in the atmosphere. As the trapped heat raises the planet’s average temperature, the heat evaporates water from the ocean and soil, putting moisture into the air.
 
As global temperatures rise, the atmosphere then holds more moisture — about 4 percent more per degree of temperature increase. Therefore there is more water vapor available to fall as rain, snow, or hail when storms occur.