The Raider Review

Deadly Dust Storms and Thundershowers in India

Ayanna Jones-Reid, Staff Writer

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Deadly dust storms and strong thundershowers are creating havoc in India. The bad weather has resulted in many deaths and numerous school closings throughout the past week.

India—the world’s second most populous country—has been experiencing one of the worst storms there since 2012. The country was first hit with fatal dust storms last week, powerful thundershowers followed this week.

The storms were particularly bad in Agra, home to the Taj Mahal. Though local reports vary on numbers, dozens of people reportedly died. The fact that the storm has affected such a large area is abnormal. Mahesh Palawat, a chief meteorologist at Skymet Weather, stated “dust storms are usually not this intense, nor do these systems cover such a large area.”

According to the Washington Post, the massive storm has “caused at least 124 deaths.” Power supplies have been cut off and schools were forced to close. The storms has destroyed many “homes, uprooted trees and electricity poles, halted trains and devastated crop and livestock.” Many people were forced to evacuate their homes. Citizens were warned by authorities to stay indoors and unplug electrical equipment due to risks of lightning.

What exactly is a dust storm? A dust storm is a strong, turbulent wind that carries clouds of fine dust, soil, and sand over a large area. They occur more frequently around this time of year and can be extremely perilous. These vicious storms impedes visibility and strong winds can sometimes result in falling branches and debris.

Meteorologist are trying to find a reasonable explanation as to why these unfortunate storms have been occuring. India’s meteorological department, believes high temperatures and a “western disturbance” has caused the storms. Other meteorologist believe global warming and climate change has resulted in this weather. In recent years, the rise in the global temperature has set new records and that is leading to increase in the number of extreme weather events across the globe. Climate change will most likely increase the frequency and severity of storms from this point on.

The people in India aren’t the only ones being affected by these destructive storms, the students at Roosevelt are too. Senior Mia Joseph, admits to being “worried” about her family members that live in India. “I tried to call a couple of them. I’ve only been able to reach a few since the phone lines seem to be down, but I’m praying that they are ok,” she added. Freshman Muhammad Arjun, sends his “condolences to the families that lost someone” and is making sure to keep them in his prayers.

The weather conditions are expected to worsen later on this week unfortunately.

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Deadly Dust Storms and Thundershowers in India