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Wildfire Smoke Update
for
Sunday, July 15, 2012 5:00 PM

Satellite Photos | Locations and Smoke Conditions


Today's Report and Forecast Today's Summary
Air quality has improved today at reporting locations. Rain and higher humidity have helped in fire and smoke suppression. Today’s smoke impacts are mostly from minor sources and leftover smoke from last week.

Storms and rain showers have been moving across the state today. This weather will continue through most of Tuesday. Relative humidities will stay high to the west and winds will be light and variable. Southeastern Montana will be warmer with lower humidity, and thunderstorms are also possible. Air quality should stay GOOD to MODERATE in most places through this timeframe. By Wednesday, another ridge of high pressure starts to build back in and temperatures will get warm again. Relative humidity values will drop in the afternoons, and with any fires in the region, air quality would get worse under stagnant conditions.
Air quality has improved today at reporting locations. Rain and higher humidity have helped in fire and smoke suppression. Today’s smoke impacts are mostly from minor sources and leftover smoke from last week. Recent rains and higher humidities have helped fire and drought concerns in certain places. This cooler, wetter trend will continue into Tuesday. Thereafter, a ridge of high pressure will build in for warmer temperatures, better fire weather, and stagnant conditions.
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: DEQMTSmoke@mt.gov




This is the visible satellite image from 4:30 this afternoon. Clouds and moisture are still everywhere across the region. 

This is the visible satellite image from 4:30 this afternoon. Clouds and moisture are still everywhere across the region.


 





This morning’s analysis from NOAA’s satellite services division shows the active fires in Montana and the smoke plumes combining and spreading downwind (the analyzed smoke is based on yesterday’s satellite coverage, the fire detects are based on last nights satellite coverage).

This morning’s analysis from NOAA’s satellite services division shows the active fires in Montana and the smoke plumes combining and spreading downwind (the analyzed smoke is based on yesterday’s satellite coverage, the fire detects are based on last nights satellite coverage).

Red indicates hot spot detected. Green represents thin smoke, yellow is moderate smoke, and pink is dense smoke. Fire size is exaggerated for visibility at this scale. To identify individual fires on graphic above go here: http://activefiremaps.fs.fed.us/lg_fire2.php 




Real time particulate information is currently available in most of the larger urban areas from MTDEQ's Today's Air website.

Today's particulate report below compares particulate levels received from DEQ's
reporting stations with MTDEQ’s Health Effect Categories.

Locations and severity of PM 2.5 particulate values over the past 24 hours from the time above.
Health Effects Categories City
  Hazardous  
  Very Unhealthy  
  Unhealthy  
  Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups  
  Moderate

 Sidney B24
Frenchtown B24
Flathead Valley B24
 

  Good

 Libby
Missoula
Hamilton
Butte
Bozeman
Seeley Lake
Helena
West Yellowstone
Great Falls
Billings
 

B1(x) One-hour BAM value (number of values)
B8(x) Eight-hour average BAM
B24 24 hour  average BAM value
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.