By DAILY MAIL REPORTER
Now you see Phoenix, now you don't: The 3,000ft dust wall rolls in across the city's suburban areas
Arizona was hit by its second giant dust storm in two weeks yesterday, turning the sky brown, delaying flights and causing mayhem for motorists, with llow visibility causing an eight-truck crash.
The dust storm, known as a haboob, formed in Pinal County and headed north-east, engulfing Phoenix at about 5:30 pm.
The monster dust wall was about 3,000 feet high and created winds of 25 to 30 mph, with gusts of up to 40 mph, said Austin Jamison, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
Plane-ly massive: The dust storm rolls in across the Phoenix's Sky Harbor International Airport , travelling north
Disruption: The haboob caused some flights at Sky Harbor International to be delayed, but the consensus is that the July 5 storm was much worse
‘You have suddenly very poor visibilities that come on with all the dense dust in the air,’ he said. ‘With poor visibility, that makes for dangerous driving conditions and that's arguably the biggest impact.’
This low visibility led to eight trucks colliding on Interstate 8. Three drivers were transported by ambulance to Maricopa Medical Center in Phoenix and seven other people refused treatment. The west bound lanes were closed so workers could clear the road.
Meanwhile, some departing flights at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport were delayed because of the storm, said airport spokeswoman Julie Rodriguez.
Incoming flights from nearby cities including Los Angeles were being held until the storm cleared, she said. She did not know how many flights were delayed or whether any were cancelled.
Accident: Low visibility during the storm caused eight trucks to collide on Interstate 8, with three drivers injured
Is anybody out there? The gigantic storm created havoc for drivers with visibility severely reduced - perhaps it might have been wise for this motorist to turn on his lights?
Wheel-y dusty: Motorists travelling along Interstate 10 suddenly found that they couldn't see further than around a quarter of a mile ahead
House about that: A vehicle drives through a brown cloud of blowing sand in one of Phoenix's residential areas
Another giant dust storm in Arizona on July 5 caught the attention of the world.
That storm brought a mile-high wall of dust that halted airline flights, knocked out power for hundreds of people and turned swimming pools into mud pits.
Jamison said Monday's storm was not as powerful or as large as the last one, and didn't last as long.
‘It's kind of like a ripple in a pond where it spreads out, slows down and fades out,’ he said.
Rodriguez said visibility at the airport was better yesterday than it was during the July 5 event, a 5,000ft-high storm that grounded flights for 45 minutes, downed trees, tossed yard furniture, and snuffed out visibility across an area of some 50 miles at its peak.
Looming: The storm towers over Phoenix and threatens to block out the blue sky completely. It brought with it gusts of wind that hit 40mph
The National Weather Service office in Phoenix called the dust storm 'very large and historic', in a statement posted on its website, describing the blow as an 'impressive event'.
Weather officials say haboobs only happen in Arizona, the Sahara desert and parts of the Middle East because of dry conditions and large amounts of sand.
Pollution levels skyrocket during dust storms and create even more breathing problems for people with asthma and other similar conditions.
The dust also brings increases in a disease known as Valley Fever, a fungal pneumonia.
Valley Fever thrives in the hot and arid south-west in dirt found just a few feet beneath the earth's surface; it can be stirred up by construction, wind and other activity.
RAW VIDEO: Gigantic Dust Storm in Phoenix , Arizona
Dust Storm ( Haboob ) moving through Phoenix, Arizona on 07/18/2011