December 1, 2011 in City, Idaho

Sunshine likely after fog burns off

By The Spokesman-Review
 
Mike Prager photo

Low light levels of autumn bring out color in cactus.
(Full-size photo)

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Fog is reported to be widespread across the Spokane and Coeur d’Alene areas, but should dissipate by later this morning.

National Weather Service forecasters are calling for mostly sunny skies by this afternoon and a high temperature of 41. The latest forecast anticipated the fog to burn off around 11 a.m.

Higher air pressure has moved onshore from the Pacific Ocean, bringing with it a stable atmosphere and a chance to see the sun.

The calm weather is expected to continue through the weekend, although temperatures are going to drop by about 10 degrees to the lower 30s for highs and lower 20s for lows.

Sun is likely to shine with a dry air mass taking over from the storms of November. Snow storms are not expected in the forecast through Wednesday.

However, the stable air mass will likely lead to an air pollution problem because cold nighttime air along the ground is not able to mix with slightly warmer air above it. Stagnant air allows pollution to remain trapped in the lowest level of the atmosphere. Wood smoke is the main pollutant this time of year.

Air quality this morning was already in the moderately polluted range. However, wood burning is not being restricted in the Spokane area. Air pollution officials are asking residents to burn with a minimum of smoke by making sure their fires have dry wood and sufficient oxygen.

During today’s morning commute, fog appeared to be heaviest in the eastern portions of Spokane Valley and on the West Plains near Fairchild Air Force Base.

It may have been a factor in a pair of crashes that slowed traffic on Interstate 90 near Liberty Lake. A crash in the westbound lanes had traffic backed up after 7 a.m.

At 7 a.m., Spokane International Airport had fog and a temperature of 29.


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