Saturday, February 12, 2022

Flights diverted, held up for late-night fog

Kolkata: An overcast sky and high humidity in the city’s air through Thursday led to dense fog over airport late at night, forcing diversion of three Kolkata-bound flights. On Friday morning, the condition shifted 600km northward to Bagdogra; low visibility there held up flights from Kolkata to north Bengal for hours.Fog formation is unusual in the second week of February as the mercury usually rises by then and humidity is low. But intermittent rain has kept the temperature low this year and also contributed to the humidity in the air, making it conducive for fog. Met officials said Kolkata was headed for a weekend chill as the northwesterly winds are set to return, pulling the minimum temperature down. While the city recorded a minimum temperature of 17.7°C on Friday, it could drop three degrees to 14°C on Saturday, the Met office predicted. The minimum temperature could stay around 14°C-15°C till Sunday, after which it could rise slowly, said Regional Meteorological Centre (RMC) director G K Das.

As the primary runway at the city airport has been shut for repairs, any dip in mercury and fog during the closure could mean major disruption as only one end of the secondary runway is now equipped with instrument landing system that assists flight operations despite low visibility.

12/02/22 Subhro Niyogi & Tamaghna Banerjee/Times of India

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