'Godzilla dust cloud' blankets Caribbean in a weather event witnessed after half a century

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: Jun 23, 2020, 01:51 PM(IST)

'Godzilla dust cloud' blankets Caribbean in a weather event witnessed after half a century Photograph:( Twitter )

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These kinds of dry and dusty air forms over the Sahara desert in Africa and moves across the North Atlantic every three to five days the northern hemisphere’s late spring to early autumn, peaking in late June to mid-August.

The Caribbean is facing a blanketing cloud of Sahara dust as it heads towards the United States. According to the experts, the size and concentration of this cloud have not been witnessed since half a century. 

The experts have nicknamed the event as the "Godzilla dust cloud" and the air quality across the region has reached "hazardous" warning people to stay indoors and use air filters. 

“This is the most significant event in the past 50 years,” said Pablo Méndez Lázaro, an environmental health specialist at the University of Puerto Rico. “Conditions are dangerous in many Caribbean islands.”

These kinds of dry and dusty air are known as the Saharan Air Layer. It forms over the Sahara desert in Africa and moves across the North Atlantic every three to five days the northern hemisphere’s late spring to early autumn, peaking in late June to mid-August, according to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Many health experts fear about those affected by coronavirus pandemic and are suffering from respiratory symptoms. Pablo Méndez Lázaro is working with NASA to develop an alert system that could help people brace for the impact. These air has been so dangerous that even healthy people are not safe with it. 

From Antigua to Trinidad & Tobago, reports of limited visibilities and extreme hazy conditions were reported. Many pictures made rounds on the social media, where some were concerned while others joked that the Caribbean looked like it had received a yellow filter movie treatment.

Jose Alamo, who is a meteorologist in  US National Weather Service in San Juan, Puerto Rico said that the United States will face the worst of its conditions on Monday and Tuesday as the dust cloud heads towards US south-east coast.

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