Monday afternoon was bringing quite a range of temperatures in the area – from 76 degrees in Central Park to 55 in Montauk.
As for Newark Airport? Well, that was on the doorstep of 80 degrees around 3 p.m., the National Weather Service said.
Hempstead at that time was reporting 68 degrees, but an automated weather station on the Hofstra University campus indicated 72 degrees had been reached at 3:22 pm. The last time the campus hit 70 was almost six months ago, on Oct. 12, according to a tweet from Jase Bernhardt, assistant professor and head of the school’s new meteorology minor program.
Stony Brook was also at 68; Farmingdale at 67; and Long Island MacArthur Airport was at 64, but shortly before had reached 67, said Joe Pollina, National Weather Service meteorologist in Upton.
Conditions are “unseasonably warm,” with temperatures “the big story,” said Rich Von Ohlen, News 12 meteorologist.
So, what’s the deal – from 55 to near 80?
Look to the wind direction, Pollina said. For the Island, that’s been primarily from the south, bringing cooler air off the ocean. Areas to the west were getting west winds, bringing warmer air from over land.
But, don’t expect a repeat for Tuesday, forecasters say, as the mid- to upper 50s are forecast, along with chances of showers later in the afternoon and overnight.
Still, the story for Monday, isn’t finished, as areas of eastern Suffolk County could be facing some dense fog by around sunset, Pollina said. Visibilities are expected to range from 1 to 3 miles, though in some spots it could be reduced to a quarter mile or less, the weather service said.
Drivers will want to “slow down, leave plenty of space between vehicles, and expect locally drastic reductions in visibility through this evening,” the weather service said.
There’s also potential for that fog to last overnight and into the Tuesday morning commute.