Tempe dust devil
© YouTube/American Everywhere (screen capture)
A passer-by has filmed a surreal encounter with a dust devil spotted by the side of the road in Tempe, Arizona.

Video of the large churning column of dust was filmed by local news employee Brad Anderson near the I-10 and Elliot Road, AZfamily.com reports.

Filmed from the window of a car, the video captures the towering whirlwind sweeping dust into the air just metres from a roadway.

Dust devils, which are known to range in size from half-a-metre wide to more than 10 metres wide, are common in Arizona.

In most cases they pose no threat to people, however larger devils can be destructive.

Devils form when hot air rises through cooler, low-pressure air and begins to rotate, creating a vortex effect.

Back in July a stunned Queensland family recorded their sighting of a large devil drifting through a paddock.