Incredible photos have captured the moment a major dust storm rolled over parts of the country, stretching about 1800km.
The long plume blasted Western Australia on Sunday afternoon, kicking up dust as it rolled through Central Australia and extended hundreds of kilometres into the Indian Ocean.
Remnants of the storm remained on Monday, with dust particles visible over the ocean.
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The fairly unusual weather pattern brought strong and gusty southerly winds through the desert and off the Kimberley coast, kicking up dust as they rolled through, according to forecaster Weatherzone.
“The huge uplift of desert dust was caused by a trough which pushed well into northern WA over the weekend, strengthened by the low-pressure system near SA and a high-pressure ridge to the south,” Weatherzone said.
Satellite photos from Japan’s Himawari weather satellite show the thick uplift of dust as it hit WA’s Kimberley region, trickling down to the Pilbara.
The dust storm stretched about 1800km. Credit: WeatherzoneSatellite photos show the thick storm hit WA’s north. Credit: Weatherzone
The dust storm did deliver some reprieve for affected areas, bringing a relatively cool summer’s day to some of Australia’s most consistently hot places.
The sizzling Marble Bar in WA’s Pilbara region reached “only” 36.9C on Sunday, more than 5C cooler than its average December max of 42.1C.
Fitzroy Crossing in the Kimberley also only hit 35.1C, its coolest December day this year so far.
The cooler break was short-lived, with Weatherzone warning serious summer heat will return to the area by the weekend, as Fitzroy Crossing swelters through 45C and 46C on Thursday and Friday and Marble Bar prepare for an expected 44C.