No you cant swith the turbo off. You can take the turbo off but unless it breaks then there is no point in doing this, you would have a huge loss of power. There is no real need to worry, the engine is usually very solid.
You may have problems with too much sand in the air. To avoid this you can place gauze over the air filter inlet and smear the inside of the air intake and the area around the filter with a thin film of grease or vaseline. Clean the filter on a regular basis and you shouldnt have too many problems.