THE sky above Britain turned yellow today after a red sun was created by fatal Hurricane Ophelia.
The gales pulled Saharan dust north to the UK to create a blanket of orange cloud, with the deadly storms also bringing powerful 80mph winds – killing three people.
The layer of thick dust brought an eerie glow across the sky and turned the sun red as Hurricane Ophelia killer winds picked up dust and debris southern Europe and Africa.
As well as sparking fears of an apocalypse, there were health concerns this afternoon as the thick blanket of dust swirling in the sky posed a risk to people with breathing difficulties and the elderly.
Met Office forecaster Grahame Madge said: “It’s all connected with Ophelia, on the eastern side of the low pressure system air is coming up in the southern direction.
“Air is being pulled from southern Europe and Africa and that air contains a lot of dust.
“So it’s most likely the appearance of sunset at midday is caused by the particles scattering the light and giving the appearance of a red sun.
“It’s certainly spectacular at the moment and quite a talking point, we’ve had a lot of calls about it.”
Dubbed the “hurricane sun”, the unusual sight has been spotted by those on the south coast.
The most affected areas in the South West include Devon, Cornwall, Bristol and Somerset. It has even been seen as far north as Manchester and Liverpool.
Storm Ophelia brings an eerie red sun in skies above parts of England and Ireland
A woman in her 70s was crushed by a falling tree as the 80mph storm hit Britain on October 16 – forcing Ireland to declare a “national emergency”.
Then later a man in his 30s died in a freak chainsaw accident in Cahir, Co Tipperary after trying to remove a tree downed by storm Ophelia, gardai said.
The death toll rose again when a man died when a tree fell on his car in Ravensdale, Dundalk.
Up to 120,000 homes were without power, schools have been closed, fallen trees blocked roads and bridges were shut after Hurricane Ophelia hit the UK mainland.
Strange footage taken in London appears to show ‘two suns’ forming in the sky
Remnants of the hurricane battered Britain’s west coast on Monday afternoon, with gusts of up to 80mph, exactly 30 years after the Great Storm of 1987 killed 18 people.
Flood warnings were also put in place along the Pembrokeshire coast with fallen trees blocking some roads.
Planes have been grounded at Manchester Airport, with 20 flights cancelled and passengers warned to check ahead.
Ireland was braced for the worst of the weather, with schools closed and around 130 flights cancelled at Dublin airport.
WHAT TO EXPECT: Five day weather forecast for the next five days
The forecast is expected to remain wet and windy in the north and west.
According to the Met Office, strong winds will gradually move from Northern Ireland and Wales into Northern England and Scotland.
Northern England, Northern Ireland and Scotland will be wet and windy.
But the winds and rain will ease throughout the day.
Some rain could reach the south later in the day.
WEDNESDAY TO FRIDAY
The rain and wind is expected to drive south by Wednesday.
But the tumultuous weather is not expected to ease up, with Friday expected to be “unsettled with showers”.
One flight caught the attention of social media, with the aircraft’s impressive landing in the strong winds earning the pilot praise.
Schools and colleges were closed in Northern Ireland, which is covered with an amber weather warning, meaning there is a “potential risk to life and property”.
The warning is issued when forecasters believe people need to be prepared to change their plans and protect themselves from the impacts of severe weather.
Forecasters warned of flying debris, such as tiles blown from roofs, as well as large waves around coastal districts with beach material being thrown on to coastal roads, sea fronts and properties.
Cork City’s stadium was struck by the strong winds, with their Turner’s Cross home demolished.