RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - A thick dust cloud hit Ribeirão Preto, Franca, Barretos and other major cities in São Paulo's interior on Sunday afternoon, September 26. Strong gusts of wind were also reported. The cloud was later dispersed by heavy rainfall which reached 50 millimeters in some cities.
According to MetSul meteorologist Estael Sias, the phenomenon is common in Asian countries, where it is known as "haboob." It is caused by rain storms with strong winds that, when coming into contact with dry soil, find remnants of patch burns, dust and vegetation, which ultimately create a "steamroller . . .