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Wildfire Smoke Update
for
Wednesday, August 14, 2013 8:47 AM

Satellite Photos | Locations and Smoke Conditions


Today's Report and Forecast Today's Summary
Rain and thunderstorms swept across parts of Montana yesterday evening, and in fact, some of those are still moving across far eastern Montana this morning. Although there is a light area of smoke high in the atmosphere across the eastern 2/3 of the state this morning, air quality is GOOD at all reporting locations.

The weather will start to transition to warmer and drier conditions today as a ridge of high pressure strengthens over the region. The chance for any isolated thunderstorm development across western Montana is minimal today; the greatest chance is across eastern Montana. Temperatures will start to warm up into the 80s with relative humidity values dropping to the low-30s to upper teens. Air quality will stay generally GOOD throughout the day today. As wildfire activity picks up this afternoon across central Idaho, that smoke will drift into western Montana late this afternoon and this evening. With few clouds in the sky, this smoke will be more noticeable and air quality may become MODERATE through tonight in the Missoula and Bitterroot Valleys, as well as some of the surrounding valleys immediately surrounding these two larger ones.
There will be another update this afternoon. Enjoy the clean air today!
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.

Kristen Martin
State Air Quality Meteorologist
Air Resource Management Bureau
Montana Department of Environmental Quality
Phone: (406) 444-0283
Email: kmartin@mt.gov




This is the visible satellite image from 8:15 this morning. Clouds and storms are still moving across eastern Montana, but to the west skies are clear as drier air works its way into the Northern Rockies. 

This is the visible satellite image from 8:15 this morning. Clouds and storms are still moving across eastern Montana, but to the west skies are clear as drier air works its way into the Northern Rockies.


 
The air is clear in the Bitterroot Valley this morning!

The air is clear in the Bitterroot Valley this morning!





 




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 reporting 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.