South Coast Smog Warning Over Sahara Dust

2 April 2014, 07:07 | Updated: 2 April 2014, 07:09

People on the South Coast should be braced for "very high'' levels of air pollution over the next few days, experts have warned.

Large areas of England and Wales will see high levels of pollution today (Wednesday 2 April), the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said.

The elevated pollution levels have been caused by a combination of light south-easterly winds, the continental air flow and dust which has blown up from the Sahara desert, a spokeswoman said.

It has left a covering of red dust over cars and streets in Hampshire and Dorset over the last few days.

"The current elevated pollution levels over parts of the UK are caused by light winds allowing the build-up of pollution, plus dust from the Sahara contributing to pollution levels,'' according to the Defra forecast.

However, tomorrow experts are anticipating "high'' or "very high'' air pollution levels across much of England and Wales.

And the high levels of pollution are expected to continue across East Anglia and the Midlands on Thursday.

But the air pollution is expected to ebb away by Friday.

Last weekend, some people found their cars to be covered in a light coating of red dust. The Met Office said that a large amount of sand and dust was swept up by storm winds in the Sahara Desert.

Experts said that the airborne particles of dust were blown north to the UK where they combined with our warm air and were deposited during showers.