How to survive a Sandstorm

How to survive a Sandstorm? If you are stuck in a Sandstorm then Turn off all of your vehicle’s lights. You don’t want other cars arriving from behind to use your lights as a guide and maybe collide with your parked car. Set your emergency brake and let off the brake pedal. Stay in your car, secure your seat belt, and wait for the storm to pass.

How to survive a Sandstorm

:black_small_square: Top tips for Sandstorm Season

The UAE has a unique climate and is prone to severe weather, such as heatwaves in the summer and sandstorms.

These sandstorms may have serious health consequences for individuals with asthma, therefore knowing how to live with asthma during bad weather and sandstorms is critical for respiratory health and a decent quality of life.

Mohamed Samir, Regional Medical Director, presents six Health & Safety guidelines for surviving sandstorms in the area this season:

1. Stay Indoors

During sandstorms, stay as inside as possible and keep windows and doors closed. Reduce your exposure to common allergens during sandstorms, which may trigger asthma episodes.

2. Check Weather and Pollution Forecast

Asthmatics should examine daily weather and air quality data on a frequent basis, particularly during the sandstorm season. Tuning in to your local weather station might assist you in planning ahead of time and managing everyday tasks.

3. Clean Air Conditioner Vents

Living in a hot climate nation means spending more time inside and using air conditioning more often. If air conditioning vents are not cleaned and examined on a regular basis, dust accumulation may be a dangerous trigger.

To minimize dust collection in ducts and vents, air conditioning equipment must be periodically serviced and cleaned every six months.

4. Use Air-Purifier

Sandstorms have the greatest impact on allergy and asthma patients. An air purifier may help you breathe easier by reducing indoor pollutants.

Although air purifiers are not a cure for asthma, they can assist in removing allergens and particles that might cause symptoms by diverting air through a filter.

If you have asthma, an air purifier may help you breathe easier by increasing the quality of your indoor air.

5. Consider a Face mask

During sandstorms, consider using a medical face mask or wiping your face with a moist towel to avoid breathing dust particles. Remember to replace your face masks on a regular basis.

6. Stay hydrated

Fluids, particularly water, are just as necessary during sandstorms as they are in hot weather. If you come into close touch with dust, remember to stay hydrated and even spritz water on your face and eyes.

Employers must realize and appreciate that workers who currently have respiratory issues will be especially susceptible during sandstorm season.

Wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, rhinitis, conjunctivitis, and even an asthma attack might be symptoms.


To protect yourself from flying sand, cover as much of your body as possible. Wind-borne sand may be deadly, but powerful winds in a dust storm can also transport larger things. If you are without shelter, attempt to keep your head low to the ground and shield it with your arms, a rucksack, or a cushion.

:black_small_square: How to Survive a Dust Storm or Sandstorm

Storms of dust and sand are among nature’s most violent and unexpected occurrences.

High winds propel grit or sand particles into the air, creating a swirling, suffocating fog that may limit vision to near zero in seconds and inflict property damage, injuries, and fatalities.

No matter where you live, knowing what to do if a wall of sand is rushing at you is a smart idea. The whole detail is written below:

Method 1 Surviving a storm on Foot
Method 2 Surviving a storm in a Car
Method 3 Thinking Ahead for next time

:black_small_square: Method 1: Surviving a storm on Foot

The whole detail is written below:

1. Put a mask over your nose and Mouth

Put on a respirator or mask intended to filter out tiny particles right away. Wrap a bandanna or another piece of fabric across your nose and mouth if you don’t have a mask.

It’s best to use a shirt sleeve or a medium-sized sheet. If you have enough water, moisten it slightly. Apply a tiny quantity of petroleum jelly to the inside of your nostrils to keep your mucous membranes from drying out.

2. Protect your eyes

Airtight goggles are preferable to spectacles for protection against blowing dust or sand. If you don’t have goggles, cover your eyes and ears with your arm as you go, then put a piece of cloth securely over your head.

3. Look for Shelter

If you don’t have a parked automobile, hide behind a large rock. Enclosures are your best bet when feasible. However, anything “leeward” of the storm protecting you from the direction of the wind is preferable to nothing.

  • Sand will bounce about as it collides with things, so try to cover as much of your skin and face as possible

  • If you can’t get to safety, huddle down. It reduces the possibility of being struck by anything flying

4. Get to High Ground

Because the densest concentration of sand or dust bounces closest to the ground, the storm will be weaker at the summit of a hill.

If you can locate a safe, solid, high place, seek it out, but only if the storm is not accompanied by lightning and there is no threat of being hit by heavier flying debris.

Do not lay in a ditch since flash flooding might occur even if there is no rain where you are.

Rain usually evaporates before it reaches the ground as a dust cloud, although it may be pouring nearby, and ditches, arroyos, and other low-lying regions may swiftly flood.

If you have a camel, sit it down and push it on its leeward side. Camels have evolved to thrive in dust storms.

If you’re in sand dunes, don’t seek refuge on the dune’s leeward side. High winds may swiftly take up massive volumes of sand, and you may find yourself in it.

5. Shield yourself from Flying Objects

Seek to locate a huge boulder or another landform to provide some protection. To protect yourself from flying sand, cover as much of your body as possible.

Wind-borne sand may be deadly, but powerful winds in a dust storm can also transport larger things.

6. Wait out the Storm

It’s just too perilous to attempt to go through the storm. Stay still and wait for it to pass before attempting to relocate to another area.

If you can go to such a refuge before a dust storm hits, do so as soon as possible and remain inside. Close all windows and doors and prepare to weather the storm. Stick together if you’re with others to reduce the risk of someone getting lost.

:black_small_square: Method 2: Surviving a storm in a Car

The steps are as follows:

1. Try safely outrunning the Storm

If you spot a dust storm from a distance and are in or have access to a vehicle, you may be able to outrun or detour around it. Some dust storms may move at speeds of up to 75 mph (121 km/h), although they are usually considerably slower.

Trying to outrun a storm, on the other hand, is not recommended if you have to put yourself in danger by driving at excessive speeds. If the storm is closing in on you, it’s wise to come to a halt and prepare.

When a storm consumes you, your visibility might be reduced to nothing in a matter of seconds.

  • Avoid trying to flee a storm on foot. Wind storms are unpredictable, and if they abruptly shift direction or gain up the pace, you might be quickly overrun

  • Drive to a safe location where you may seek refuge until the storm passes

2. Pull the Car over and Stop

If your vision reduces to less than 300 feet (91.4 m) while driving, get off the road if feasible, exit the highway, set your parking brake, switch off your headlights, and ensure sure your brake lights and turn signals are all turned off.

If you are unable to safely get off the road, switch on your headlights and hazard lights, slow down, and continue with care, sounding your car voice occasionally. If you can’t see ahead of you, follow the centerline of the roadway.

Stop at the closest safe area. Turning off your headlights when stationary off the road reduces the likelihood of a rear-end accident.

If your external lights are turned on, other drivers will often use the taillights of the vehicle in front of them as a guide to assist them to navigate the road ahead of them.

If you are pulled over and have your lights on, someone may believe they can follow you and drive you off the road or possible collision with you.

3. Take Cover and Stay-put

You should not try to move about in a blinding storm since you will be unable to identify possible risks in your route.

  • Close the windows and switch off the vents that bring in outside air

  • Don’t move your car till the storm has gone

:black_small_square: Method 3: thinking Ahead for Next Time

The steps are as follows:

1. Know where dust and Sandstorms occur

Although these kinds of storms are generally associated with the Sahara and Gobi deserts, they may occur in any dry or semi-arid area. Prepare yourself in case you are caught in a storm if you live or travel in a dusty or sandy area with strong winds.

2. Heed dust storm warnings

Dust storms are more likely to occur on hot summer days under particular atmospheric conditions, and meteorologists can usually forecast their occurrence.

Before driving in hot, dry weather, listen to local TV or radio broadcasts and consider rerouting or postponing your journey if dust storms are expected. Roadside signs may also be provided to warn you of the impending dust storm.

If you are likely to get caught in a storm, it is best not to travel at all. Stay at home and batten down the hatches to avoid being harmed or damaging your vehicle.

3. Be Prepared in case of an emergency

If you live in a storm-prone location, you should always be prepared for a storm. Wear long sleeves and trousers if you’ll be outdoors for an extended amount of time.

Carry a satchel or keep a box in your car’s trunk stocked with stuff you’ll need in the case of a sand or dust storm. Fill the emergency kit with the following items:

  • A mask intended to remove tiny particles

  • Goggles that are airtight

  • A source of water

  • In the case of a winter dust storm, which may swiftly lead to hypothermia, a warm blanket


If you come across a dust cloud, assess the traffic surrounding your car (front, behind, and to the side) and start slowing down. Do not wait until bad visibility makes it impossible to safely exit the highway - do so as soon as possible. If possible, leave the roadway completely.

:black_small_square: Sand and Dust storms

In dry and semi-arid locations, sand and dust storms are typical weather dangers. They are often triggered by thunderstorms or severe pressure gradients associated with cyclones, which increase wind speed across a large region.

These high winds carry significant volumes of sand and dust from bare, dry soils hundreds to thousands of kilometers distant. Wind erosion produces 40% of the aerosols in the troposphere (the lowest layer of the Earth’s atmosphere).

The dry areas of Northern Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, Central Asia, and China are the primary suppliers of these mineral specks of dust. Australia, America, and South Africa all contribute tiny but significant amounts.

Global estimates of dust emissions, based mostly on simulation models, ranging from one to three gigatonnes per year.

Dust particles, once discharged from the surface, are carried to higher altitudes of the troposphere by turbulent mixing and convective updrafts.

They may then be carried for long distances by winds, depending on their size and weather circumstances, before being dragged back to the surface. Because bigger particles settle faster than smaller particles, there is a trend toward smaller particle sizes during transit.

Precipitation also washes dust out of the atmosphere. The typical lifespan of dust particles in the atmosphere varies from a few hours for particles bigger than 10 m in diameter to more than 10 days for sub-micrometric particles.

:small_orange_diamond: Interaction with Weather and Climate

Aerosols, especially mineral specks of dust, have an influence on both weather and global and regional climate.

Dust particles, particularly when polluted, operate as condensation nuclei for warm cloud production and as effective ice nuclei agents for cold cloud formation.

The capacity of dust particles to function as such is determined by their size, shape, and composition, which are determined by the parent soils, emissions, and transport mechanisms.

Clouds’ capacity to absorb solar radiation is affected by changes in their microphysical composition, which has an indirect effect on the energy reaching the Earth’s surface.

Dust particles can have an effect on the formation of cloud droplets and ice crystals, influencing the quantity and location of precipitation.

Airborne dust has a similar impact to the greenhouse effect in that it absorbs and scatters solar energy entering the Earth’s atmosphere, limiting the amount reaching the surface, and it absorbs long-wave radiation rebounding back up from the surface, re-emitting it in all directions.

Again, dust particles’ capacity to absorb solar radiation is determined by their size, shape, and mineralogical and chemical makeup.

To assess this effect, the vertical distribution of dust in the air (vertical profile) and the properties of the underlying surface are also necessary.

:small_orange_diamond: Impacts on human Health

Human health is jeopardized by airborne dust. The size of dust particles is an important predictor of possible human health hazards.

Particles bigger than 10 m in diameter are not breathable and hence may only harm external organs, mostly causing skin and eye irritation, conjunctivitis, and increased susceptibility to ocular infection.

Smaller than 10 m inhalable particles often get caught in the nose, mouth, and upper respiratory tract, and are consequently related with respiratory illnesses such as asthma, tracheitis, pneumonia, allergic rhinitis, and silicosis.

Finer particles, on the other hand, may pass through the lower respiratory tract and into the circulation, where they might impact all internal organs and cause cardiovascular problems.

In 2014, a worldwide model study indicated that dust particle exposure caused around 400 000 deaths from cardiopulmonary illness in the over 30 population.

Dust may spread several infectious illnesses. Meningococcal meningitis, a bacterial infection of the thin tissue layer that surrounds the brain and spinal cord, may cause brain damage and death in 50% of cases if left untreated.

Outbreaks occur all throughout the globe, but the “meningitis belt,” a region in Sub-Saharan Africa with a population of 300 million, has the greatest prevalence.

Many studies have connected environmental variables, such as low humidity and dusty conditions, to the timing and location of infections, and these outbreaks have a clear seasonal pattern.

Researchers think that inhaling dust particles in hot, dry weather damages the mucosa of the nose and throat, producing an environment conducive to bacterial infection.

Furthermore, iron oxides found in dust particles may increase the risk of illness. Dust also aids in the spread of valley fever, a potentially fatal illness, throughout the Southwest of the United States and Northern Mexico by serving as a carrier of Coccidioides fungal spores.

To be Precise

A sandstorm is a large quantity of wind that occurs in sandy environments, mainly in deserts, and is capable of lifting the top layer of sand off the ground and pushing it in every possible direction.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Here are some questions about How to survive a Sandstorm:

1. In a sandstorm, how do you breathe?

Close the vents, windows, and doors. Stay in an air-conditioned room if feasible. Wear a mask over your mouth and nose if you must go outdoors to avoid breathing in dust. A P2 or P3 mask from a hardware shop should do the trick.

2. What is it like to be caught in a sandstorm?

Once you’re in a sandstorm, it’s too late to attempt to flee; you’ll feel disoriented since your sense of direction is utterly damaged by low visibility and sand whipping at your exposed skin.

3. What words would you use to describe a sandstorm?

Sandstorm, is a strong dry wind blowing over the desert that raises and transports clouds of sand or dust along with it, frequently so thick as to hide the sun and limit visibility virtually to nil; also known as a dust storm. This kind of wind is mainly caused by convection currents caused by significant earth heating.

4. In actual life, how long do sandstorms last?

“A sandstorm might continue anywhere from several hours to a whole day,” Nielsen-Gammon notes. “Sandstorms usually only influence the air from approximately 1-3 miles above, so aircraft flying above that range is OK.” On the ground, though, sand flowing at 50 miles per hour may be a genuine disaster.

5. What is the cause of a sandstorm?

They are often triggered by thunderstorms or severe pressure gradients associated with cyclones, which increase wind speed across a large region. These high winds carry significant volumes of sand and dust from bare, dry soils hundreds to thousands of kilometers distant.

6. What are the environmental consequences of sandstorms?

Dust storms erupt in deteriorated agricultural dry regions, removing topsoil and causing more desertification. Farmers are forced to see their topsoil and livelihood actually blew away as a consequence. If left uncontrolled, this cycle threatens to displace whole populations in certain areas.

7. How did people deal with the dust?

Many families packed their goods, loaded them into their vehicles, and fled the dust and desert of the Midwest for Washington, Oregon, and California. They were prepared to cultivate and harvest on other people’s property for any pay.

8. Is it possible to have rain during a sandstorm?

This SUV owner may have wished she had read this article before venturing off-road. Sandstorm conditions are also favorable for rainstorms, which may cause flash floods. Because desert sand cannot absorb water rapidly, heavy rainfall may cause flooding swiftly and without notice.

9. What is the duration of dust storms?

Dust storms can strike without notice and may severely limit visibility, resulting in fatal multi-vehicle collisions on the road. In a typical year, one to three dust storms may sweep through the Phoenix region. Dust storms often last between a few minutes and an hour.

10. What did they do to be safe from the dust storms?

The weather service documented 14 dust storms in 1932. The next year, the figure had risen to 38. To protect themselves, people hung damp sheets in front of entrances and windows to filter the filth. They used gummed tape and rags to pack window frames.


To sum it up about How to survive a Sandstorm, we can say that Avoid doing anything outside. If you must go outdoors, spend as little time as possible outside. Cover your nose and mouth with a mask or a moist towel to decrease dust particle exposure. If properly placed over the nose and mouth, a P2 or P3 mask, available at hardware shops, should prevent even the smallest particles.

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