The first sandstorm of spring has hit the northwest Gansu Province, a local meteorologists said on Saturday.
The sandstorm, accompanied by strong winds, started shortly after midday on Friday in Yumen City. It lasted until the evening, according to Zhang Li, a Yumen Meteorological Bureau observer.
The sky became dark and yellow with a visibility of about 400 meters at ground level, she said.
Dunhuang, a tourist city famous for its ancient Buddhist grotto caves, was also blasted by sand.
The dusty weather continued in some areas of the province, a major source of sandstorms in the country's north, on Saturday.
The China Meteorological Administration said on Wednesday the country's northern regions were likely to experience more frequent and severe spring sandstorms than last year.
(Xinhua News Agency February 24, 2008)