Dust storm rages through Lubbock County - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Dust storm rages through Lubbock County

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

The storm blew in fast and furious and caught everyone by surprise.

"At 1:30 it came in when I was out in west Lubbock. It blew pretty hard and it rained on me and messed up my car," said Lubbock resident Gary Wood.

Monique Pena and her friend drove in from New Mexico and had a tough time getting to Lubbock.

"It was really bad. I came from Clovis, New Mexico and just tumbleweeds were hitting my car and at one point I couldn't even see the road because of the storm."

"It was kind of hectic. I can't really see too much with all the dirt flying around and the wind throwing you off course," said Lubbock resident Ashley Valderrama on her way to a United Supermarket.

The storm blew down a fence on the corner of 18th and Avenue X and then at 1 p.m. it turned deadly.

Multiple traffic accidents and pileups were also attributed to the low visibility caused by the sand storm.

"We do have one confirmed fatality but have not identified the name at this time," said DPS Corporal John Gonzalez.

I-27 northbound and southbound had to be closed down because of the severity of the accidents. Corporal Gonzalez describes how the pileups began:

"They slowed down because there was zero visibility. You couldn't see in front of you and when they slowed down obviously other cars are coming in too fast and they started to domino and we started having the crashes," he said.

"Sand storms are pretty common in West Texas but they are getting more and more severe, and the drought hasn't helped. So any water that we can get at this point helps a lot of these things not occur," he said.

Copyright 2012 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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