Anyone who has driven through the Pilbara has probably looked out the window and seen a willy-willy or two. 

But not everyone gets the chance to get as up close and personal with a dust storm as workers at BHP’s Jimblebar iron ore mine, east of Newman. 

Incredible vision shared on social media shows workers at the heart of a swirling funnel of red dust as it makes its way across the mine site. 

Hang onto your hats indeed! 

Willy-willies can tower several hundred metres in the air and stretch as wide as 10 metres. 

They are caused when a pocket of hot air near the ground rises quickly through cooler air above it, causing an updraft that then begins to rotate. 


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Most are harmless but on isolated occasions they have been known to cause property damage. 

As this collection of videos from the Pilbara shows, they can also be highly mesmerising to watch!
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