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Hurricane Dorian turns Florida skies stunning shades of purple

Posted at 11:24 AM, Sep 05, 2019

Hurricane Dorian brought wind and rain to Florida, but it also brought sunset skies in brilliant shades of purple on Wednesday evening.

The phenomenon behind the stunning hues is known as "scattering."

According to the University of Madison-Wisconsin, molecules and small particles in the atmosphere change the direction of light rays, causing them to scatter.

Scattering determines what colors you see during a sunrise or sunset. And on Wednesday evening, the storm clouds from Hurricane Dorian distorted the ultraviolet light from the sun as it set, making the skies look like they were being seen through a filter.

"You're seeing a sunset normally, but you have low clouds underneath from the hurricane that are distorting the (normal sunset) colors to make it seem purple," storm expert Steve Fundaro explained to WTLV.

This isn't the first time people have witnessed color changes in the sky during or after storms. Louisiana residents were treated to similarly brilliant skies after Tropical Storm Barry passed through, which made the sky look purple and pink.