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Sandstorm causes pileup in Germany, 8 dead

ROSTOCK, Germany, April 9 (UPI) -- Eight people were killed and dozens injured when a freak sandstorm blew across a highway in northern Germany, officials said.

The storm Friday caused a multiple pileup close to the Baltic Sea in the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, the BBC reported.

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About 80 cars and three trucks were involved in the pileup and about 20 of the vehicles caught fire and burned. Officials said dry weather, the recent plowing of farm fields and high winds combined to produce the sandstorm.

Officials said at least 41 people were hurt and there was concern the death count could rise.

"I have never seen anything like it before and it's difficult to describe," a motorist identified as Steffen said. "I think I will only later realize what happened. I think this is my second birthday today."

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