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Maricopa sandstorm timelapse (Phoenix US, June 16, 2012)

phoenix-sandstorm-timelapse

Timelapse of the Phoenix Sandstorm from Maricopa, AZ that hit at 5.30 PM” on June 16 by YouTube poster whittakerbrock.

Dust storms are common in the southwestern U.S. during the summer, which is the region’s monsoon season. During the monsoon, an overall shift in winds across the Southwest draw in tropical moisture, resulting in a significant increase in thunderstorm activity and rainfall.

Thunderstorms that develop can produce strong downdrafts, or “downbursts”, which are powerful winds that blast downward and outward from the thunderstorms. When this happens, dry, loose sand on the desert floors can get kicked up, creating a wall of dust that travels outward, spanning a much larger area than the thunderstorm itself. Dust storms that develop in this way are also called haboobs. They can happen in desert regions across the world.

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7 Comments

  1. […] heats the atmosphere and the effects on clouds may be numerous and they're very hard to disentangle.Look up. The clouds over your head right now might carry dust particles that a week ago, were swirli…might be in the clouds above you right now. During a sandstorm, the heavier sand particles stay […]

  2. @NewAthena

    I experienced a massive dust storm in the eighties while driving home from Tucson to Phoenix. Everybody on the highway heading north to Phoenix at the time pulled over as the skies turned dusty, then dark with low visibility of a few feet.

    I checked around for historical data on the net and found nothing remotely close to what I experienced of said eighties dust storm. Again, these type of dust storms were rare then unlike the slew of (back-to-back) dust storms taking place now.

    Our global weather patterns are changing dramatically as more and more people take notice and are affected by changes. I’m not an alarmist, nor am I a global warming (arm chair) theorist, but I am a realist taking mental notes of changes experienced together.

  3. @GenOne,

    When was the last time you were in a dust storm in Arizona? Collectively it sounds big and many when you lump these dust storms into the “Southwest” category.

    If you mean common as in uptick of recent storms within the last two years in Arizona then I am with you, but maybe you should monitor these truths if we’re headed down that road since you’re willing to make the statement.

    1. As I said I have lived in Arizona for 14 years. We have had mild little sand storms but nothing like we have had the last 2 years. If you look historically at the information you will realize that 3-5 mile high storms have only been in the last 2 years just as have the massive hail storms. @GenOne sorry to tell you the Monsoon season hasn’t really existed here in the last 5 years. Climate change is in full affect in Arizona.

  4. I spent my formative years in Arizona and recall seeing dust storms in the sixties and seventies, but they were rare. As of lately, there is an uptick in these mighty dust storms that has caught the attention of many around the world, which coincides with other global dust storms e.g., the Middle East/China.

    1. “Dust storms are common in the southwestern U.S. during the summer, which is the region’s monsoon season”

      Contradicting NewAthena’s Statement

      There should be someone monitoring these truths

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