Blowing dust advisory issued for area of past I-10 closures

SAN SIMON, Ariz. (AP) -- A blowing dust advisory has been issued for an area where low-visibility conditions have forced multiple closures of a 60-mile stretch of Interstate 10 in southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico.

The advisory issued Tuesday by the National Weather Service for eastern Cochise County in Arizona is set to run from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The latest of at least six closures since late April shut I-10 between Willcox, Arizona, and Lordsburg, New Mexico, for about four hours Monday.

Traffic during closures is detoured 110 miles through Safford, Arizona, on U.S. 191 and U.S. 70.

Much of the blowing dust comes off a field near San Simon, Arizona.

State officials are working with the owner of recently cleared farm land to water it down and reduce the airborne dust.

Blowing dust is possible anywhere strong wind is blowing. Motorists should avoid driving into dust. If caught in a dust storm, follow these safety tips from

-- Immediately check traffic around your vehicle (front, back and to the side) and begin slowing down.
-- Completely exit the highway if you can.
-- Don't wait until poor visibility makes it difficult to safely pull off the roadway.
-- Don't stop in a travel lane or in the emergency lane.
-- Turn off all vehicle lights, including your emergency flashers. You do not want other vehicles approaching from behind to use your lights as a guide, possibly crashing into your parked vehicle.
-- Set your emergency brake and take your foot off the brake.
-- Stay in the vehicle with your seatbelts buckled and wait for the storm to pass.