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Sahara dust blown over from north Africa settles in UK

PUBLISHED: 22:39 24 April 2019 | UPDATED: 22:39 24 April 2019

Picture taken with permission from the twitter feed of @theFosterlab of a car covered in dust in Romsey, Hampshire. Photo: @theFosterlab/PA Wire

Picture taken with permission from the twitter feed of @theFosterlab of a car covered in dust in Romsey, Hampshire. Photo: @theFosterlab/PA Wire

Car owners in Norfolk may have been left wondering why their vehicles were covered in dust this morning.

The Met Office said dust from the Sahara Desert settled in the UK on Tuesday and Wednesday after being blown over from north Africa.

Particles were swept high into the air by gales in the Sahara and then transported to the UK before being deposited on the ground during rain showers, according to the Met Office.

The deposits were particularly visible on cars and windows, the forecaster said.

Many motorists have posted on social media saying that their cars need cleaning after getting a coating of the red dust.

One Twitter user said: “Thanks Sahara Dust. Now I can wash the car again.”

Most of the dust was deposited on Tuesday, with many waking up on Wednesday to find red dust settled outside their homes.

Met Office forecaster Mark Wilson said: “Strong winds over the Sahara whip up dust.

“That goes into the sky and upper part of the atmosphere and heads towards the UK.

“Once we get some rain, that washes it out the sky and onto the ground.”

Changing weather systems mean that further deposits of the red dust are not likely, according to the Met Office.

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