Dust Storm in Tehran Kills 5, Injures 30

Winds up to 80 miles per hour struck Iran's capital city, causing a chain-reaction car crash and city-wide darkness.

A heavy dust storm roared into Iran's capital Monday, blacking out the sun in a swirling cloud and tearing down trees in a squall that killed five people and injured 30, state television reported.

The storm struck Tehran with winds of up to 110 kilometers per hour (68 mph), state television reported. Its report said the storm killed five people, while Iran's official IRNA news agency said it killed four people as winds hit 130 kilometers per hour (80 mph).

The TV report said the storm broke trees and plunged the capital into darkness for several minutes. It said the storm caused a chain-reaction crash on a highway south of the capital with 20 vehicles and caused international flights to be cancelled. Air traffic controllers diverted several domestic flights to central Iran.

Authorities asked children and the elderly, as well as those with heart problems, to remain indoors due to the dust.

The TV report said heavy winds also engulfed parts of central Iran, but there were no reports of any casualties.