Winter Fog in Bangalore
Winter begins in Bangalore along with much dreaded morning fog enveloping the city. Today was the first day of dense morning fog. I took some snaps from our house balcony. I have been keeping a close watch on morning weather since last two weeks. We have travels coming up in next seven days or so and the fog creates havoc in schedule of train and air traffic.
We all learnt in schools why fog occurs etc. – which we have forgotten pretty well. So I did some research using Google search to refresh my memory… and now I remember (why there was no Google when we studied?) fog usually occurs during low temperature and on high altitude. Most part of Karnataka, including Bangalore is situated on high altitude, where the solar radiation is low compared to plateaus or places near sea level. This increases chances of fog building. Atmospheric pressure builds up during winter, which forms water vapor droplets and thereby creates fog.
Now that being the scientific explanation, this year situation is different. The rains in Bangalore normally cease within October thus giving the ground and the air to dry out before the onset of winter by late November. This year however, the rains are continuing till a few days back. This high moisture in the air, coupled with the many water bodies in the northern outskirts of the city helps create the fog. I also read up somewhere on the Net about fog intensified by the Nandi Hills situated just a few miles north of the airport. Wow!
My Google research yielded more scary news… Fog becomes dense when the temperature is very low. That’s why we see heavy fog between late night and early hours of the day. Because of gravitational force fog moves towards earth surface and disturbs visibility. Oh God!
Now that explains why the fog normally commences around 04:00 and disperses by 08:30 in Bangalore. However, since the airport has its highest flight movements between 06:00 and 09:00, the impact of even this limited period fog is magnified on the passengers.
So the air traffic schedule is expected to go haywire in coming days. The Bangalore International Airport has CAT II system for low visibility operations. Upgrading to CAT III ILS is planned but will happen only when the second runway is ready. Till then the air passengers have to cope up. They keep upgrading technologies from one version to the next… do they ever measure of impact?
We are scheduled to travel to Kolkata in next seven days. Will our flights leave on time? Is there a God of Fog? Or does it come under the department of Weather God? Ha ha ha! Whatever, I’ll be very happy if our flight leaves within one hour of scheduled departure…
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