Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Every week I get an email with different satellite views that showcase some interesting elements of weather. This week, I received a picture of a serious dust storm that was taking place in Afghanistan on December 20. The dirt is being driven by strong north winds, carrying the dust over the Arabian Sea. Dry lakebeds near the Iran/Afghan border are the most common sources of blowing dirt. Dust storms in Afghanistan can happen any time of the year, but they are more common in the summer months. The average is 6 days a month with dust storms in the summer, but it drops to 2 dust storm days (on average) in the winter season.
Almost everyone reading this has probably been in or around some blowing dirt, but maybe not one where the visibility was almost zero.
Seems like we had our share of blowing dirt this summer with all of the dry weather that we had across the central and southern US. Dry weather is likely to be with us until the 8th or 10th of January. Eventually, by the middle of next month (January), we'll start to enter the active pattern once again with storms coming out of the southwest US. Check back for updates. The mild weather to end 2011 might fool you, but cold air will find us before too much longer.
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