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Wildfire Smoke Update
for
Friday, September 7, 2012 2:45 PM

Satellite Photos | Locations and Smoke Conditions


Today's Report and Forecast Today's Summary
Air quality is GOOD across the state today. However, there is a region of mostly thin smoke across parts of the Bitterroot Valley and west of Dillon, but most of this smoke is higher in the air and not affecting air quality. Tonight, air quality should remain GOOD, although some parts of the Bitterroot Valley and over to Wisdom may see MODERATE conditions. Tomorrow, the ridge of high pressure that is sitting right over us today will move slightly to the east. For us, this means that atmospheric winds will blow from the southwest. Temperatures will warm up and fire activity will increase. As a result, air quality will gradually decrease across the southwestern region. Fire Weather Watches are currently in effect for Sunday afternoon through Monday evening as extreme fire weather is expected. Southwest winds will increase on Sunday ahead of an approaching weather system and cold front. Relative humidities will be very low and temperatures will be very warm again. The cold front will pass late Sunday through Monday. Thunderstorms are possible along the cold front, where lightning could spark and spread fires with dangerous winds. Very windy conditions and low humidities will persist on Monday as well. Tuesday and Wednesday will be cooler, but still a bit breezy. Winds will come mostly from the west during this time, so smoke that is produced—either in Idaho or Montana—will travel east to impact locations downwind. Air quality is GOOD across the state today. However, there is a region of mostly thin smoke across parts of the Bitterroot Valley and west of Dillon, but most of this smoke is higher in the air and not affecting air quality. Tonight, air quality should remain GOOD, although some parts of the Bitterroot Valley and over to Wisdom may see MODERATE 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 2:15 this afternoon. Skies are almost completely clear across the state, but some smoke can be seen in eastern Idaho, just west of the Bitterroot Valley. 

This is the visible satellite image from 2:15 this afternoon. Skies are almost completely clear across the state, but some smoke can be seen in eastern Idaho, just west of the Bitterroot Valley.


 





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

  

  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
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.