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Photograph: Nick Harrison / Alamy Stock Photo

What the hell is a ‘blood storm’ and is London about to get whacked by one?

It’s got something to do with Saharan dust

Written by India Lawrence
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To add to the list of terrifying things hitting London (a monkeypox epidemic, crippling inflation and the London Eye’s new Jubilee pod), we have one more thing to look forward to. Get ready, because apparently we may be hit by a storm of ‘blood rain’.

No, it’s not a new Stephen King novel, it’s a real phenomenon. Thankfully, it doesn’t have anything to do with real blood but is a thunderstorm with a high level of red-coloured dust that gets mixed in with the rain, giving it an interesting crimson hue. 

According to the Met Office, particles can get whipped up by strong winds and, if they get into atmospheric circulation, be carried for thousands of miles. The dust from the imminent ‘blood rain’ is coming all the way from the Sahara Desert. 

Earlier this week, the Met Office said: ‘​​There are some dust concentrations in the atmosphere above the UK at present, which might well be washed out, but it’s likely to be relatively small amounts on the whole.’

The last time London was hit by a Saharan dust storm was March 2022, when a mysterious orange cloud hung over the city. Although it might look and sound apocalyptic, it’s actually not that unusual: the Met has explained that this is likely to occur several times a year. But they do happen, so be careful out there.

London could run out of water within 25 years.

There are some exciting new plans to ‘rewild’ London.

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