Why there might be weird dust on your car and strange coloured sunsets in Wales in the next few days

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Drivers in Wales might have to give their car a good wash over the next few days, because of a weather phenomenon predicted by forecasters. And the sky might change colour as well!

Saharan dust clouds, a mixture of sand and dust from the Sahara – the vast desert area that covers most of North Africa – are likely to be blown into Wales and the UK by southerly winds, the Met Office predicts.

Temperatures are set to spike with the arrival of a warm air mass, which will produce picturesque, orange coloured skies.

The Met Office tweeted: “Low pressure to our NW is feeding S’ly winds into the UK from the Canaries, allowing #Saharandust to be drawn N too.

“The recent satellite image below shows this in red.

“You may notice dust deposits on cars & colourful sunrises/sets next few days.”



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On its website, the Met Office says wind can blow strongly over deserts – whipping up dust and sand high into the sky.

It adds: “If the winds in the upper part of the atmosphere are blowing north, the dust can be carried as far as the UK.

“Once it is lifted from the ground by strong winds, clouds of dust can reach very high altitudes and be transported worldwide, covering thousands of miles.

“In order for the dust to get from up in the sky down to the ground, you need something to wash it out of the sky – rain. As raindrops fall, they collect particles of dust on the way down. Then, when the raindrops land on something and eventually evaporate, they leave behind a layer of dust.

“Saharan dust is relatively common in the UK, often happening several times a year when big dust storms in the Sahara coincide with southerly wind patterns. In certain weather situations, Saharan dust can also affect air pollution and pollution levels.”



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