The airports in the Canary Islands were closed for several hours on Saturday evening due to a large sandstorm. The sky turns completely orange, reports the Spanish newspaper El Pais . Air traffic is now slowly starting up again.

The government of the Canary Islands issued a warning on Saturday evening because of the strong wind. Because of the flying sand it is advised to keep windows and doors closed.

According to weather agency Weerplaza, there was an "enormous dust cloud" earlier on Saturday in the Canary Islands of Lanzarote and Fuerteventura. Weerplaza reports that sandstorms like these are not unique to the island group. "It usually happens a few times a year," the weather agency said.

Willem Derksen, who lives in Gran Canaria, says in conversation with NU.nl that all airports on the island group were indeed closed "until further notice". "A storm is now also coming with gusts of wind up to 120 kilometers per hour," says Derksen.

The view of the Canary Islands is poor due to the large sandstorm. (Photo: Willem Derksen)

The cause is strong winds from the east

According to Weerplaza, the cause of the sandstorm is a strong wind from the east, which is also called the Calima by residents of the Spanish archipelago. Sand and dust then arrive from the Sahara in the air above the Canary Islands.

The meteorological agency of Spain predicts that the sandstorm will continue until Monday afternoon, reports El Pais .

37

Video

Sky above Canary Islands turns orange due to sandstorm