Visible light communication (VLC), popularly known as light fidelity (Li-Fi), is a promising alternative to overcome the limitations of radio-wave communication. VLC is a green technology which uses light-emitting diode (LED) illumination to transmit data without needing fibre cables. VLC is applicable for both indoor and outdoor communication. In this study, we investigate the effect of sandstorms on VLC via simulating a vehicular-to-road VLC (V2LC) outdoor application. Sandstorms are a weather phenomenon which frequently occurs in the Arab peninsula and other parts of the world; in this context, researchers have not thus far addressed the effect of sand particles, which absorb and scatter light, on VLC. Our simulation is conducted using MATLAB software (Natick, Massachusetts, U.S.A.), and the results show that the effect of sandstorms on VLC is similar to that of fog and rain as investigated by other researchers. However, sandstorms are also different in terms of the nature of sandstorm particles, with different sizes and refraction indices when compared with rain and fog particles. We also find that high-density-clay sandstorms, among other types of storms, most severely affect VLC communication and limit the transmission range. Other low- and medium-density storms less severely affect VLC while exhibiting a relatively larger communication range. © 2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston.