ARIZONA NEWS

Dust storm rolls into Phoenix area, hindering visibility for drivers

Aug 2, 2018, 6:40 PM | Updated: Aug 3, 2018, 8:23 am
(Twitter Photo/@ADOT)...
(Twitter Photo/@ADOT)
(Twitter Photo/@ADOT)

PHOENIX — A massive dust storm rolled into the Phoenix area on Thursday, hindering visibility for drivers across the Valley.

The National Weather Service issued a dust storm warning for parts of Gila, Maricopa and Pinal counties until 8 p.m. on Thursday.

The dust storm was expected to cause “near zero visibility with damaging wind in excess of 60 mph.”

It could also cause “dangerous life-threatening travel.”

The weather service advised drivers to avoid being on the road and if they were caught in a dust storm to pull off the road, turn off your lights and keep your foot off the brake.

According to FlightAware, Sky Harbor held all inbound flights at their origin until 7:30 p.m. due to the storms, but Sky Harbor officials encouraged travelers to check their flight status online.

Shortly after the dust came the rain. The National Weather Service issued a severe thunderstorm warning for Maricopa County until 8:30 p.m.

According to ABC15, thousands of residents across the Valley were without power Thursday night.

Capt. Larry Subervi with the Phoenix Fire Department said crews were responding to a house fire in the area of 33rd Avenue and Ironwood. Subervi said the neighbors reported that the fire was caused by a lightning strike.

Sherine Zaya, a spokeswoman with the City of Goodyear, said in an email that residents in the Estrella community were urged to stay indoors after several large power lines were downed by the storm.

“Police and fire personnel are working to ensure safety but they ask that residents in the area to avoid being outside since some of the water puddles might be dangerous due to the downed electricity lines,” she said.

Anyone who was affected by the power outage and damaged homes could seek shelter at Estrella Foothills High School.

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Dust storm rolls into Phoenix area, hindering visibility for drivers