Posted: 8:55 p.m.
With the start of Arizona's monsoon season June 15 comes the threat of dust storms while on the road.
Dust storms form when strong winds of up to 60 mph kick up sand and debris, creating a wall of dust as high as several thousand feet.
"You can reduce visibility to zero, so you're basically driving blind in a motor vehicle. And that is not safe at all," said Dustin Krugel, spokesperson of the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT).
More than 100 dust storms have been reported across Arizona in the last decade, and one to three dust storms will move through the Phoenix area per year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
"Be on the lookout for limited visibility. And when your visibility starts getting reduced, that's a good time for you to look for a safe place to pull over the side of the roadway," Krugel said.
ADOT's campaign is reminding drivers to "Pull Aside, Stay Alive."
"Come to a complete stop. Turn off all your lights, and set your emergency break. And simply keep your seatbelt buckled, and wait out the storm," said Krugel.
"And one of the reasons we tell drivers to turn off all their vehicle lights--you don't want those vehicles that are trailing you to follow you thinking you're a moving vehicle."
It's difficult to predict when and where these dust storms will hit, and dust storms can form seemingly out of nowhere, but these safety tips can help drivers prepare for the sudden dangers.