What Makes Wind Gust?

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By By Steve Pool

SEATTLE - Just like traffic or large crowds, air ebbs and flows as it moves just like a fluid.

A good example is to think about when you're in rush hour traffic -- there are times when you'll speed up to 20 mph, then slow to near zero, as traffic ahead of you changes lanes, exits, etc.

Wind works the same way. If the Earth were flat, there would be few wind gusts. But with the terrain, you get bumps in the road that slow down and speed up wind as it interacts with terrain.

The sun also helps cause wind gusts, as it warms the surface unevenly, you get some pockets of hot, rising air, with air then rushing in to replace it.

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YouNews Celebrating the 4th in Bellingham! Celebrating the 4th in Bellingham!
For the last several years my church, Central Lutheran in Bellingham (down the hill from WWU), has hosted a 4th of July gathering where anyone can come and join us to watch the fireworks. This year, I set up outside our preschool for this shot.