The dense fog that disrupted drivers in South Florida Wednesday morning is now in the rearview mirror. Although a patchy fog persists, visibility is at 10 miles and it’s a cool 68 degrees on Thursday morning.
Aside from the early fog, South Florida will also see a slight chance of showers. The high will climb to 77 degrees before temperatures cool down at week’s end.
Lows Thursday night are expected to be in the low-60s and forecasters expect temperatures to drop even further Friday night, into the high 50s. Saturday night will see a slight rise to about 60 before another minor cool-down Sunday night with lows around 58 degrees.
Thursday’s patchy fog is expected to clear by mid-morning.
Forecasters had some trouble determining what to expect Thursday after Wednesday’s dense fog. Unlike rain and heat, forecasting fog is tricky.
“The difficult part with predicting fog is that all ingredients have to come together,” said Kim Brabander, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Miami-Dade said.
Brabander’s predictions of a “patchy fog” turned out to be correct for Thursday, but was not upgraded to another dense fog warning like the day before.
The fog has been the result of atmospheric ingredients mixing just right.
So what are some of those ingredients?
Tuesday’s rain, Brabander said, led to a moist ground, which, coupled with a mostly clear sky later in the day, led to favorable conditions for fog the next morning.
That’s why the sky looked like pea soup early Wednesday, cutting visibility to a quarter-mile or less in many places.
“If you have a completely cloudy sky, you’re not going to have fog,” Brabander said, adding that Wednesday’s thick fog is unusual for South Florida.
The region was under a dense fog advisory through the Wednesday morning rush hour and was lifted at 9 a.m.
Starting in the pre-dawn hours, visibility was reduced to a quarter of a mile in areas including West Kendall and Hollywood.
Heavy fog also was reported in the Interstate 75 corridor centered on Griffin Road. Fog also cut visibility in Northeast Miami-Dade. Fort Lauderdale reported zero visibility.
Drivers weren’t the only ones affected.
Twelve flights were diverted from Miami International Airport and two arriving flights were delayed, said airport spokesman Ignacio Ortiz. The flights were rerouted to Nassau, Orlando, Tampa and West Palm Beach.
Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport experienced similar difficulties.
Starting around 6 a.m., seven flights had to be diverted to Orlando and two had to be held, one in St. Paul and one in Tampa, said airport spokesman Greg Meyer. “For a while there, we weren’t able to accept planes,” Meyer said. He, too, called the thick fog “unusual.”
“Usually we have enough wind to blow it away,” Meyer said, adding that the skies cleared up by 7:30 a.m.
The fog even infiltrated social media with many South Floridians taking to Twitter, Instagram, Vine and Facebook to post pictures and videos of the unusual weather conditions.