There was no escaping this: the sand dust of the Sahara, carried by the northern winds, flew over France on Saturday, turning the atmosphere yellow in much of the south and east of the country, in particular Burgundy, Franche-Comté, Alsace, the Vosges, the Alps or the Lyon region.
The initial origin of the sandstorm is a depression off Morocco, which raised dust that was later carried by the winds.
In its journey, the city of Oran in Algeria thus found itself in an orange light on Friday, before arriving in France the next day.
“A phenomenon that occurs quite regularly”
This rise in sand particles from the Sahara “is a phenomenon that occurs quite regularly, as long as there is a fairly sustained southerly wind regime”, mainly in autumn or winter, explained Frédéric Nathan, forecaster for Météo France.
In October 2017, an important episode of this type had reached Brittany (western France), after having also flown over Portugal, then hit by forest fires, transporting ash as well as sand, recalls the forecaster.
According to the Spanish monitoring center, after sweeping the east of Spain and the south and east of France on Saturday, the particles will move this Sunday towards the center of Europe, losing little intensity.
Its trajectory should affect Italy, Switzerland, a good part of Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic.