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Updated Jul 26, 2014 - 8:59 am

Dust storm blows through metro Phoenix, causes power outages

PHOENIX -- Arizonans are sweeping up after a massive dust storm blanketed much of the Phoenix area last night around rush hour.

A three-thousand-foot-high wall of dust called a "haboob" swept across the Valley of the Sun, accompanied by thunderstorms. Many drivers were forced to pull over and wait out the storm with visibility reduced to between a half-mile and nothing at all. Around 12-thousand people lost power and Sky Harbor Airport issued a temporary ground stop for all incoming flights for around two hours.

While some thunderstorms on the south side lingered, the dust storm warning for the metro Phoenix area was lifted

Salt River Project first reported more than 10,000 power outages across the Valley around 8:00 p.m.

Less than 30 minutes later, that number had dropped by a few thousand, and SRP said it hoped to have all power restored in a few hours.

At 2:00 p.m., the National Weather Service first issued the blowing dust advisory, lasting until 9:00 p.m. for Maricopa and northwest Pinal counties.

Approximately 30 minutes later, storm cells were brewing both southeast of Phoenix near Tucson and north of Phoenix, near Flagstaff.

At 3:52 p.m., storms were in full force along the Interstate 8 corridor.

Canyon del Oro in Tucson also closed due to flooding.

At 4:30 p.m., a dust storm blew just southeast of Casa Grande at Arizona City, Ariz., in Pinal County and headed north.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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