Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 24 August 2019

Watch: Extreme sandstorm turns the sky red over Australian town

One long-time resident said she had never seen one so intense

A severe sandstorm hit a rural New South Wales town on Tuesday, turning the sky a dark red and causing power outages for residents in the area.

Video shot from a family farm in the town of Barellan shows red dust blanketing the surroundings as trees jostle in the wind. "It got incredibly dark, it was as if it was 2am at night and someone had just thrown a blanket over the sun," Sally Lees, who filmed video in the early afternoon, said.

Though dust storms do hit the area frequently, they have never been so intense, Ms Lees added. "I was born and raised on my property, and this was the most frightened and intimidated, yet impressed I've ever been."

More than 5,000 homes lost power in the area because of the storm, according to local news, though most had it restored by Tuesday night. Apart from Barellan, the towns of Temora and Ariah Park were also affected.

Extreme weather in Australia made the news last month when Sydney was hit by what was regarded as the worst hail storm to hit the city in 20 years.

The hail stones were the size of tennis balls, sending beach-goers scarpering for cover.

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