A major ‘Haboob’ or sandstorm hit most of Lebanon and Syria yesterday causing major cities like Damascus and Beirut to come to a stand still.
The international Airport in Beirut had to close for several hours till the storm passed. Authorities advised drivers on the road to proceed with caution or not to try and venture out at all.
A Reported 750 people and 2 deaths occurred in Lebanon alone.
In Syria the storm had caused the internal civil war to come to a halt for most of the day.
Local weather experts claim that this storm was unusual and out of season. A strong and large sandstorm that has not been seen in several decades.
A haboob is a type of intense dust storm carried on an atmospheric gravity current, also known as a Weather Front. Haboobs occur regularly in arid regions throughout the world.
They have been observed in the Sahara desert (typically Sudan, where they were named and described), as well as across the Arabian Peninsula, throughoutKuwait, and in the most arid regions of Iraq. African haboobs result from the northward summer shift of the inter-tropical front into North Africa, bringing moisture from the Gulf of Guinea.
Haboob winds in the Arabian Peninsula, Iraq, Kuwait, and North America are frequently created by the collapse of a thunderstorm, while haboobs in Australia may be frequently associated with cold fronts. The deserts of Central Australia, especially near Alice Springs, are particularly prone to haboobs, with sand and debris reaching several kilometers into the sky and leaving up to 30 centimetres (1 ft) of sand in the haboob’s path.