Massive Dust Storm Engulfs Mumbai, Airport Operations Hit

(MENAFN- IANS) Mumbai, May 13 (IANS) A massive dust storm engulfed large parts of Mumbai and suburbs besides adjoining Thane and Navi Mumbai with the visibility dropping drastically forcing the closure of operations at Mumbai Airport, here on Monday.

The dust storm, something rare for coastal Mumbai, whipped up suddenly with strong gusty winds around 3 pm and within minutes enveloped almost the entire city, dipping visibility, darkening the atmosphere and hampering the movement of traffic and pedestrians.

The stormy conditions and poor visibility have also hit the flight operations at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA).

After over an hour, the dustiness gave way to dark clouds with showers in many parts of Mumbai which appreciably dropped the scorching temperatures and also improved visibility to normal levels.

The causes of the dust storm in Mumbai, often referred to as the concrete jungle, were not immediately known, but the IMD had issued an alert of a storm with thunder and lightning shortly before it started.

The BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation has issued a fresh warning of a thunderstorm over Mumbai with strong winds of 50-60 kmph likely to hit parts of Mumbai after dusk.

The IMD Pune head K. S. Hosalikar said that a moderate to intense thunderstorm would hit Thane, Raigad, Palghar, Ahmednagar, Pune and Satara, besides parts of Mumbai in the next couple of hours.

Many people complained that their homes, shops, offices and other places were covered in a thick layer of dust that blew in abruptly before they could shut the doors and windows.



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