Sandstorms are common in Saudi Arabia and one must know to survive in such cases of emergency. Sandstorms are common usually from late February till the mid of July with often 2 to 3 sandstorms in a month as well. The intensity and frequency vary from location to location most commonly towards the high plane sandy areas of the Kingdom. It is a very unpredictable violent phenomenon. A very fast high wind can rise all the sand particles into the air in a turbulent manner, reducing the visibility with sand clouds everywhere. Just in some seconds, this reckless sandy storm can cause massive destruction, injuries, deaths, and property damage. Some handy tips to survive in such situation are mentioned below;[irp]
How to Survive a Sandstorm in Saudi Arabia?
Cover your face: Put on a mask or respirator if easily available to filter out dust particles and avoid breathing difficulties. If you don’t have a mask or eyewear, just wrap around a clean piece of cloth for the protection of your face. Also, moisten your nostrils using petroleum jelly to prevent it from drying.
Search for high grounds: The Higher density of sand is present near the ground so search for some high spots or peak where the force of sandy winds will be much lesser. It is a perfect spot if there is no danger of lightning at those peaks.
- Avoid deep ditches, otherwise, in case of flood or rain might fill it up causing a problem for you.
- If there is a camel along you, sit with it hiding on its side as camels are adapted to these sand storm.
- Never seek shelter in the leeward side of sand dunes otherwise you might get stuck in piles of sand during the storm.
Protect from flying objects: Protect yourself from hard flying objects which might hit you. It is better to grab something for your protection. Be it bag pack, pillow or a big hard rock to cover up as much as possible for protection from fast blowing sandy wind and objects coming along with it and Wait for it to be ended. Stay wherever you are and don’t try to move during the storm as it is dangerous. Wait till it ends to move somewhere else.
Surviving Sandstorm in a Car: When in a vehicle, you feel the storm coming, change your way and run away from it. But don’t put yourself at risk if you have to travel at a high speed. If the storm already arrived, you can just protect yourself by parking your car on a side. But keep in mind, you need to park your car way beyond the road. If you park your car alongside the road, there are chances someone will hit you from the back because of very low visibility. If you are driving, drive slowly, using the horn and keep the lights on. It is better to follow a big truck and keep the hazards on. This big truck will keep on giving you directions of the road.
TIPS to Survive Sandstorm in Saudi Arabia: To avoid it next time, and research well where do usually storms occur and the peak times. Check out for dust storm warnings on radio or TV and do not travel if you are likely to get caught in the storm. Prepare your equipment including masks, goggles, blanket, and water and always be ready if you are in a place where sandstorms are common.