We're coming off an incredibly wet Monsoon in 2021 (3rd wettest on record for the ALERT system). This was followed by a very dry winter and spring across the most of the state and western US. Looking ahead to this summer, most of the ingredients we look for are present for an active and wet monsoon. However, we'll also take a quick look at some similar historic setups that may prove a little caution is warranted.
The District has installed and maintains 355 automated precipitation gages throughout Maricopa and surrounding counties which measure the amount and timing of rainfall in real-time. These data are transmitted to the District via radio and stored on the base computers.
Thunderstorms frequently produce a variety of wind types. These wind types can create dust storms or “haboobs” often coming with no warning and significantly reducing visibility.
Generally one to three dust storms will move into the Phoenix area in a year lasting a few minutes to an hour. You can endure these brief but powerful windstorms if you know how to react.
Do not drive into or through a dust storm.
Do not wait until there is low visibility to take action. Immediately check traffic around you and slowly and safely pull over as far as you can, completely off the paved portion of the roadway. Do not stop in a travel lane or the emergency lane. Completely exit the highway if possible.
Turn off all of your lights, including emergency lights. Put the car in park and set the emergency brake. Take your foot off of the brake pedal. Other motorists may tend to follow taillights in an attempt to get through the dust storm, and may strike your vehicle from behind.
Stay in the vehicle with your seat belt buckled and wait for the storm to pass.
Mosquitoes have a serious impact on the health, comfort and economic welfare of people. Some species transmit diseases to man and animals. In Maricopa County, there is particular concern with mosquito-borne encephalitis (sleeping sickness). Large numbers of mosquitoes interfere with outdoor work and recreation, cause livestock to lose weight and lower property values.