24.9°C 03:00 pm

Angry Olga

Tuesday, 2nd February, 2010

* A view of what is becoming an average day in Broken Hill; a thick dust storm enveloped the city at around 3pm yesterday afternoon. * A view of what is becoming an average day in Broken Hill; a thick dust storm enveloped the city at around 3pm yesterday afternoon.

A thick dust storm enveloped the city at around 3pm yesterday afternoon.

The build up to the storm which, unusually, came from the east, brought people from their offices. They watched as it descended, casting a red pall over the city. Visitors Dirk Van Bakel and Teun Gerritts, from the Netherlands, had to ask locals what the red cloud on the horizon was.

"First we thought it was a rain cloud," Teun said. "But then I thought sand, something desert, or it was a little bit of sand, but it's covered everything." Dirk said he had never seen a dust storm before. "Nothing I've seen before looks like this," he said.

"It's quite impressive but it must be awful for the people who live here, say if they put their washing out or if they forget to close their windows and go to work." The pair are on a four-month break from their studies and travelled through Thailand and Malaysia on their way to Australia.

They said they came to Broken Hill on a whim. "We didn't really have a plan to come here," Dirk said. "We were in Shepparton visiting a friend and decided to see some outback." Teun said he did not know how long they would stay before driving their van to the Gold Coast.

They will spend six weeks in Australia before returning home.

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