A huge wave of dust swept over the coast of Western Australia on Wednesday, Jan. 9,2013. A Bureau of Meteorology forecaster explained to The West Australian that the striking view was created when the sand and dust was mixed into a thunderstorm's wind and rain.
A dust storm or sandstorm is a meteorological phenomenon common in arid and semi-arid regions. Dust storms arise when a gust front blows loose sand and dust from a dry surface. Particles are transported by saltation and suspension, causing soil erosion from one place and deposition in another. The Sahara and drylands around the Arabian peninsula are the main source of airborne dust, with some contributions from Iran, Pakistan and India into the Arabian Sea, and China.