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Warning as Saharan dust cloud that turns sky orange heads for UK

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huge sandstorm that turned the skies of Madrid burnt orange is expected to descend on parts of England by Wednesday morning.

Eerie photographs showed the streets of Madrid and Murcia lit up in an illuminated orange colour as a sandstorm brought Saharan dust from Africa in high winds dubbed Storm Celia by Spanish authorities.

Now atmospheric scientist Dr Claire Ryder is warning Brits of a significant reduction in air quality and a chance that motorists may wake up to find their cars covered in Saharan dust on Wednesday.

A man and a dog stand on a hill as storm Celia blows sand from the Sahara desert over Madrid

/ REUTERS/

Dr Ryder, who works at the University of Reading, said: “The plume is forecast to reach southern England during the early hours of Wednesday, covering areas from Dorset to Suffolk, with the southeast counties, particularly Kent, being the worst affected.

“People are likely to see surfaces such as cars getting dusty and red, and air quality may be slightly lower than usual due to the dust particles in the air.

“The dust has been transported more than 1,500 miles to the UK from Algeria and Morocco over the last two days, driven by strong winds from Storm Celia, named by the Spanish Meteorological Agency.”

It came after Madrid residents were told to stay indoors by Spanish officials after the huge sandstorm from the Sahara dumped dust across the capital.

Spain’s national air quality index have deemed the air in the capital and large parts of the south-east coast to be “extremely unfavourable” – its worst rating.

The weather service described the dust storm from the Sahara as “extraordinary and very intense”.

People walking as storm Celia blew sand from the Sahara desert at the Sol square in Madrid, Spain

/ AP

Many people woke up in Madrid on Tuesday to find a layer of red dust covering terraces, streets and cars.

The sky in the capital and other cities had a gritty tinge to them.

Visibility in Madrid and cities like Granada and Leon was reduced to 2.5 miles, the weather service said.

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