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Massive Saharan Dust Cloud Will Hit US Shores Tomorrow

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First Alert Saharan dust arrives in the ArkLaTex Friday

Every year, about 800 million tons of dust is picked up by the wind from deserts in North Africa and blown across the Atlantic Ocean, traveling to the Amazon River Basin in South America, beaches in the Caribbean and, in part, into the air in North and South America. The cloud reached the Caribbean on Sunday, and it's reportedly the thickest one seen in the area in decades.

Saharan dust has been moving west across the southern Atlantic Ocean and has recently reached the Caribbean Sea. A dust storm of this size and with such high concentrations is rarely, if ever, seen. Weather observers were anticipating the event days ahead of time, with the National Weather Service even going so far as to host a Facebook Live conference to help residents of the region prepare for what was about to hit.

It's so large its been nicknamed the "Godzilla Dust Cloud".

As for allergy sufferers, vulnerable people - those who might be recovering from coronavirus or already sensitive to allergies - should monitor conditions and symptoms, but rest easy that most of it will be treatable at home.

The dust does, however, quell hazardous tropical occurrences such as hurricanes by stifling the moisture needed for these storms.

The Saharan Air Layer also leads to vivid sunsets and sunrises because of the way the dust scatters the sun's light.

Be on the lookout for Saharan dust in the air! "This plume may weaken some as it crosses the Gulf of Mexico toward Texas, but chances are this is still going to be unlike anything that most of us have seen in Texas".

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