Delhi saw a foggy morning Monday with visibility dropping significantly in the early hours. The air quality in Delhi also deteriorated to hit the ‘severe’ category early on Monday, with the 24-hour average Air Quality Index (AQI) at 406 at 9 am.
At the airport in Palam, visibility dropped to around 150 to 200 metre between 3.30 am and 6 am, before improving to around 350 m at 7 am, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD). When visibility is around 199 m to 50 m, IMD categorises it as ‘dense’ fog.
With dense fog enveloping other parts of Northwest India as well, visibility was low across Punjab, Haryana, and parts of Uttar Pradesh Monday morning.
Dense fog conditions are likely to persist over parts of Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh, and Uttar Pradesh over the next four to five days, according to an IMD forecast issued Monday morning.
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Delhi saw the season’s first fog episode in October when visibility fell to around 350 m in some parts of the city.
The minimum temperature early on Monday morning was around 7.2 degrees Celsius, a degree below the long-term average for this time of the year. On Sunday, the minimum temperature was lower at 6.2 degrees Celsius, while the maximum temperature was around 23.7 degrees Celsius, a notch above the normal.
Over the week ahead, the minimum temperature is likely to remain at around 7 or 6 degrees Celsius, while the maximum temperature is set to fall further to around 22 degrees Celsius by December 23, the IMD forecast indicates.
AQI crossed the 450 mark at some monitoring stations in the city. The worst AQI in the city was at Anand Vihar where it was 456, followed by Nehru Nagar with an AQI of 454.
An update issued by the Air Quality Early Warning System on Sunday said that meteorological conditions are highly unfavourable for the dispersion of pollutants. A dip in the temperature and low wind speed has been making the dispersion of pollutants difficult.