PHOENIX — Residents are cleaning up and preparing for Fourth of July celebrations after the city’s first dust storm of the summer blasted Phoenix with strong winds, knocking out power to thousands and grounding numerous flights.
The storm came through Thursday night with a wall of dust that enveloped parts of the city and snarled traffic on area roadways.
It was the first of the yearly monsoon season storms.
Powerful winds, sometimes gusting to 50 mph, knocked down numerous trees and power lines across the city.
Meanwhile, investigators were probing whether lightning caused two large fires in an industrial area of west Phoenix where firefighters worked through the night to contain the blazes. Roads around the area remained closed this afternoon because of concerns there may have been hazardous materials inside some of the structures.