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Fog lifts, along with warnings

TAMPA — Drivers in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties encountered heavy fog blanketing roads Friday morning, and the Florida Highway Patrol and National Weather Service advised caution.

The patchy fog reduced visibility to as little as a few blocks in some areas. The fog stretched from the Pinellas beaches east through Brandon.

The weather service advised motorists to slow down and use low-beam headlights in dense areas. Drivers appeared to follow the advice: The Florida Department of Transportation reported no major incidents in the Tampa Bay area. Traffic.com reported a few minor accidents in Hillsborough and Pinellas. The fog had no impact on air travel, said a spokeswoman for Tampa International Airport.

Three critical ingredients contribute to foggy weather, said weather service forecaster Richard Rude.

The first is a low temperature — between the upper 50s and lower 60s, Rude said. Mix moisture low to the ground and a light wind and you've got fog. The cool air and light breeze condense the moisture, leaving the air cloudy, he explained.

The fog was lifting by 9:30 a.m. At that time, Rude said the weather service was letting all the weather warnings expire.

Bay News 9 meteorologist Juli Marquez said the rest of the day should be partly sunny and warm. Temperatures will likely be in the upper 70s by this afternoon.

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Fog lifts, along with warnings 11/20/09 [Last modified: Friday, November 20, 2009 1:46pm]

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