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Wildfire Smoke Update
for
Friday, September 4, 2015 1:12 PM

Satellite Photos | Locations and Smoke Conditions


Today's Report and Forecast Today's Summary
Air quality in all locations throughout Montana is currently GOOD .

The cold low pressure system continues to slowly move south and deepen into Montana bringing chilly, wet weather for the state. The low is expected to exit Montana and move into Canada Sunday night and a weak secondary trough is forecast to swing into the northern Rockies bringing the chance for light rain on Monday. A high pressure ridge will steadily develop into next week, resulting in west to northwest flow aloft, keeping conditions dry and temperatures generally warmer.

The smoke outlook is good for the weekend and into Monday. Smoke impacts may return next week under the ridge of high pressure. The cooler temperatures and higher humidities are allowing firefighters in Washington, Idaho and Montana to reinforce lines on existing wildfires. The rains have helped slow, but not ended, fire season.

Another update will be posted Tuesday morning, September 8, unless significant changes occur.
The rains and cooler temps have eliminated smoke impacts and all monitors in the state are currently reporting GOOD concentrations. Over the weekend and into Labor Day, expect air quality in most locations to remain in the GOOD to MODERATE categories. A return to dry and warm conditions is expected to settle in Tuesday of next week and is likely to persist the remainder of the week. Any associated smoke impacts from wildfires in Washington, Idaho and Montana are going to be monitored closely as the ridge of high pressure builds next week.

Another update will be posted Tuesday morning, September 8, unless significant changes occur.

Residents near active fires and under plumes aloft need to remain aware of current conditions and use the visibility guidelines to guide their activity decisions as the situation changes.

Air Quality Bureau
Montana Department of Environmental Quality
Phone: (406) 444-3490
Email: DEQ-ARMB-Admin@mt.gov




Wet weather as seen at the Goat Haunt webcam in Glacier NP: 

Wet weather as seen at the Goat Haunt webcam in Glacier NP:
Source: NPS

 
The satellite view of Montana from yesterday afternoon shows clouds moving in:

The satellite view of Montana from yesterday afternoon shows clouds moving in:
Source: NASA

Clouds covering most of Montana this afternoon:

Clouds covering most of Montana this afternoon:

Source: NOAA 




The smoke report below compares particulate levels where information is available to MDEQ’s Health Effects Categories. Real time particulate information is currently available in most of the larger urban areas from several different sources including: DEQ run PM-10 BAMS and PM2.5 BAMS, NWS ASOS visibility monitors, and USFS remote access Nephelometers and BAMS. These advisories represent conditions between midnight and 8 AM and may change substantially throughout the day.

Locations and severity of forest fire smoke reports since midnight of the date above at reporting stations.
Health Effects Categories City
  Hazardous  
  Very Unhealthy  
  Unhealthy  
  Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups  
  Moderate

  

  Good

 All locations 

B1(x) One-hour BAM value (number of values)
B8(x) Eight-hour average BAM
B24 24 hour  average BAM value
Vis(x) Visibility value (number of hours)
Vis(am/pm) Visibility value from twice/day reporting stations

Local impacts in areas immediately adjacent to active fires are expected to exceed some or all of the advisory levels.  DEQ recommends the use of local visibility guidelines to evaluate possible health risks and make informed activity decisions.