It rains mud in half of Spain due to the arrival of the Saharan haze

Murcia, with a stamp more typical of Mars.  /Agencies

Murcia, with a stamp more typical of Mars. / Agencies

The intrusion of a large suspended mass is leaving the streets and cars covered in red dust in many cities

Javier Varela

Extraordinary phenomenon in much of Spain. If on Monday large amounts of reddish sand accumulated on the sidewalks and cars parked in the streets of cities such as Malaga, Alicante, Almería or Murcia, this morning other areas of Spain such as Madrid have risen under a blanket of dust reddish.

It is the same color that dyes the sky under which a good part of the Peninsula has dawned today and that throughout this day will continue to be felt in a good part of the territory, according to the forecast of the State Meteorological Agency (Aemet) . This situation blurs visibility and makes passersby's eyes itch.

The reason for this phenomenon is a strong intrusion of haze, which is leaving rain in the form of mud in the southeast of the peninsula. The mass of Saharan dust will be felt especially in the eastern part of the peninsular Mediterranean, from Almería, through Murcia and Valencia, to the Balearic Islands, where it is already offering Martian prints, with the atmosphere dyed an intense red and large accumulations of sand. on the streets. Other cities like Bilbao have also been surprised by this 'rain of mud'

The haze is the dust in suspension from the Sahara desert that in certain situations like this is dragged to our country. The Aemet predicts that Saharan dust will continue to arrive, so the rainfall in the Peninsula and the Balearic Islands may be accompanied by mud and visibility will be reduced.

poor air quality

Suspended particles degrade air quality and can have negative effects on health, the environment and some economic activities, in particular aviation, due to reduced visibility, and the generation of solar energy. On the other hand, its content of mineral salts and metals can have a positive fertilizing effect for agriculture and fishing in the areas where these particles are deposited.

Its orange color is due to the fact that these particles are made up of dust, sand and even ashes or clay. There are two types of haze, the one known as 'natural' or the one caused by 'special events'. In the case of the first, the particles that form it usually come from desert sand, also known as 'suspended dust'. In the second case, it is caused by pollution or forest effects. In Mediterranean areas, this phenomenon is usually associated with precipitation, known as 'mud rain', since the drops of water drag the dust particles towards the ground. In the case of haze due to pollution, it can lead to what is known as acid rain.

In addition, the position of the Celia storm to the southwest of the Peninsula has caused a flow of winds from the south and the African continent that has caused that great cloud to enter, one of the densest and most abundant in memory, and which will remain At least until Thursday.

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