A warm southwesterly or southerly that blows from North Africa, a Scirocco begins as a dry wind and picks up moisture as it crosses the Mediterranean. By the time it reaches southern Europe, it is uncomfortably humid.
As the image shows, siroccos can originate as cyclonic winds that begin over the sea and swirl across the desert before turning northward.
Over the desert, a sirocco stirs up a lost of fine dust that interferes with visibility and can interfere with the functioning of fine machinery. In some cases, it gives rise to sandstorms.
However, as it crossed the Mediterranean into Europe, the Sirocco brings fog and rain, and the hot sultry conditions can cause headaches and insomnia for some. These winds blow year-round, bringing gale force winds that usually last 10-12 hours, but can continue for up to three days.
The name Sirocco must be considered evocative by advertisers. Among other things, it has been used to name a car, a movie, a kayak, a golf club and a fashionable Bangkok restaurant.