Arizona Dust Storm Report Released Online by National Weather Service; Dissects Cause and Development

Categories: Weird Science

dust storm doppler.JPG
Image: National Weather Service
A Doppler radar image captures the enormity of the July 5 dust storm.

The July 5 dust storm was among the most "significant" ever seen by National Weather Service experts who have been in the Valley 30 years, according to a new online report.

Everything you wanted to know about the meteorology of the storm that sand-blasted the Valley on Tuesday is contained in the NWS' report published today on the Web, (tip of the hat to Scottsdale newshound Pete Kosednar, who told us about it).

The "very large and historic" dust storm began with thunderstorms that developed east of Tucson on Tuesday, the report says. The monsoon-season weather produced downdrafts of up to 70 mph, which helped whipped up all that beige powder.

Although the height of the ensuing dust cloud that began heading toward the southeast Valley was up to 6,000 feet high, Doppler radar typically only works for storms at higher than 4,000-feet elevation, making the dust storm difficult to detect. Ground spotters in Eloy then began calling to say something major was about to happen.

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Image: National Weather Service
Weather service officials snapped this shot as the dust storm they were tracking approached their outpost.

At about 7 p.m., meteorologists pin-pointed what appeared to be the storm moving on their radar screens, and examined it with a new "dual-polarization" radar that gathers extra detail.

NWS workers stepped outside to take the picture and video published on the Web page. Visibility dropped to zero in some places, officials note, and the cost due to damages on the ground is likely to be "substantial."

Then came the storm of media calls: NWS officials conducted 40 interviews in the next 24 hours, and at least 1,000 news articles were published about the event.

More than 100 dust storms have been logged by the weather service in the last 10 years, but the reports states that "while records of most widespread, most intense, largest, etc., dust storms are not kept, NWS meteorologists that have worked in Phoenix for almost 30 years have said this was one of the most significant dust storms they have experienced."

Judging by the number of drain cleaning service and pool-maintenance vans we've seen out and about in the last couple of days, many Valley residents are still dealing with the aftermath.

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A prophecy was released a while ago that said there would be a "black cloud" over Phoenix. It seems to have come true. The prophecy was released by Sollog. Check him out. He also predicted a lot of other things.  Here is the prophecy.


Quite the storm. Thank you, New Times, for not calling it the stupid 'H' word ( okay, I have to say it: haboob ). Every haboobie on TV has been using the term to describe what we locals have always called a 'dust storm'.   

Walter Concrete
Walter Concrete

I love the weathermen.   They tell us the temperatures throughout the valley from sun up to the present.    They tell us what happened but not what's going to happen or why.   If it's a forecast they mollify it by putting on percentages.    They don't know what really causes storms or wind so they stick with the old crap about temperature differentiation and down drafts and up drafts and highs and lows.    Read about the electric universe and learn about how the universe and the world works.   


Uhh, it was brown. Less of a cloud over phoenix, more of a storm rolling through phoenix. in monsoon season. No rusty rods or nuclear meltdowns associated with it, justa  lot of dirty cars and pools. Just like every July I've seen for the last 35 years.BEHOLD, I SEE A RISING FIREBALL IN THE EAST, WITH A FURY UNSEEN IN OUR LANDS. IT SHALL RISE, WITH WINDS BLISTERING, AS A FURNACE. THOSE LEFT UNPROTECTED WILL BURN, RED WITH DISCOMFORT AND PAIN. WILDLIFE, HIDING IN FEAR OF THE GREAT FIERY ORB. IT SHALL CAUSE WATER TO DISSAPPEAR, RIPARIAN AREAS WILL WITHER AND DIE. And then September will come, and it will drop into the 90's, nightime should be mid seventies.

Central Scrutinizer
Central Scrutinizer

Wow, that's a really bold prediction, dust clouds in Phoenix. Like that doesn't happen every year.


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