Environment & Conservation > Massive Dust Storm Hits New South Wales

Massive Dust Storm Hits New South Wales

Published: September 23, 2009

Wednesday, September 23, 2009. A massive dust storm covered most of the State of New South Wales and parts of southern Queensland today.

People in Sydney and Canberra woke to see a red sky that looked like something from a science fiction movie.

Many tons of topsoil from western New South Wales were blown toward the coast and most of the State experienced gale force winds.

Much of the inland was cleared for sheep farming. Without trees, there is nothing to hold the soil together and the strong winds have blown the topsoil many kilometers away.

Further north, the dust storm hit about ten o’clock in the morning, reducing visibility and causing havoc.

People were warned to stay indoors and close doors and windows wherever possible.

Children ate their lunches indoors at school and all outdoor sport was cancelled.

In the Northern Rivers area, the dust got into our mouths and eyes and covered everything left outside.

Within a few minutes of driving to my child’s school, my car was completely covered in dust. A poor, disoriented rainbow lorikeet, flying low and clearly distressed, hit the windscreen of the car. Luckily, I was driving very slowly in the 40km school zone and the bird survived.

The photo was taken in Lismore, looking down Ballina Street.


1. bay on September 24, 2009

Wow, that's so intense! Thanks for the story - I'd been trying to find some information about it and all the other sites were loading too slowly. I'm kinda glad I wasn't in Australia to experience it!

Any Comments?


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