Massive Dust Storm in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia, western parts of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar, Kuwait and Bahrain experienced a dust storm on March 26 and 27 and the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instrument aboard NASA's Aqua satellite captured an image of the dust. MODIS captured an image of the blowing dust on March 26 at 09:55 UTC (5:55 a.m. EDT). The strongest concentrations of dust appeared to stretch from the southwest to the northeast in Saudi Arabia. The dust storm is a result of low pressure areas over Iran and Iraq.
Today, March 28, the forecast from the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Presidential Affairs, National Centre of Meteorology and Seismology called for generally hazy and dusty weather under partly cloudy skies. Blowing sand and dust are expected to cause poor visibility at times.
The Khaleej Times on-line on March 27 reported that a strong dust storm affected air travel in Kuwait and Bahrain. Visibility in those countries and western parts of the UAE were reduced to as little as 100 meters ( 109 yards) in some areas.
The red outlines in this image represent the location of fires unrelated to the dust storm.
Image credit: NASA Goddard/MODIS Rapid Response Team
Text credit: Rob Gutro, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center