People in England when woke up today for work, school or even for just a coffee were amazed to see the sky had turned red. The whole Britain sky was cast with a blood-like eerie gloom due to Hurricane Ophelia.
The Red Sahara dust was whipped and painted across the sky and gave it a martian look. It is believed that the hurricane picked up dust from, North Africa the debris from fires in forest of Spain and Portugal. This then traveled to UK with the strong gusts of wind.
The London sky looked very different from its daily plain grey color too the color of reddish-orange tint. People all over captured this on their social media.
While it may seem weird and straight out of a horror movie, according to meteorologists a Red Sun before a storm hits the surface is normal.
Helen Chivers explained the reason behind the red sky was the fact that Ophelia originated in Azores. From where it moved to Sahara and took the tint of the sand there.
“The red sun and golden sky are partly due to Storm Ophelia,” said the meteorologist.
“You’ll have noticed how warm it’s been over the last few days, and this is because Ophelia has pulled warm air up from Africa.”
“The southerly winds that come with Ophelia have come up from Africa, picking up dust particles on their travels,” she added.
“The winds have also picked up smoke from wildfires over southern Portugal. All of that has come over the UK, and what we’re seeing is the effect of the sunlight being scattered by the dust and smoke particles from Sahara wildfires,” she said about how increase in UK’s temperature is been shown for the past week.
The temperature has reached over 20 degrees which is eight degrees higher than temperature of UK in October. This is all because of Hurricane Ophelia.
She added, “It’s a bit like how you see red sunsets. Sun’s light comes towards us and hits the dust particles.”
She explained that the red sky phenomenon is similar too the orange skies we usually see near the sun.
“The blue part of light from the sun is then scattered, and all we’re seeing is the red part of the spectrum. Visible light can be split up into a spectrum of colors, ranging from blue to red,” she added explaining how red skies form.
Clean air scatters blue light more than red wavelengths, explaining why the midday sky normally appears blue.
But when there is dust in the air – as there is today – the blue light is scattered, making the sky appear red.
She also added that the Red skies wont last forever and would soon be over.
“The weather system of dust and smoke will probably only last a few hours,” added Helen.
People reported that they smelled something burning in the sky. And this is because people in UK aren’t used to this odor. This smell is present in the Tropics and the people are not used to that.
Fortunately, the red sky which was caused by Hurricane Ophelia will soon fade away.