Updated Noon MDT Friday, August 30, 2013
Valid through Noon MDT Tuesday, September 3, 2013
All DEQ-issued Stage 1 forecast and cautions have been lifted.
Atlanta continues to be impacted by smoke from the Little Queens fire to the north. Air quality was in the moderate yesterday. Today, air quality is expected to similar to yesterday. Air quality is worse in the morning and then improves to the good to moderate category during the afternoon and evening hours, before returning to Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups. Atlanta is forecast to be moderate today with periods of Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups.
Ketchum continues to experience air quality in the Moderate to Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups category in the morning before improving to good air quality by afternoon.
Weiser is currently experiencing periods of unhealthy air quality before improving during the afternoon due to the Weiser Complex burner 15 miles to the northwest.
Smoke will be transported to the east-northeast today with impacts mainly along the Central mountains. The I-90 corridor near Coeur d’Alene should expect to experience light smoke impacts, as well as regions near the Raft and Hells Canyon 1 fire, essentially along highway 55 from New Meadows to McCall, and west on highway 95 from New Meadows to Weiser. Garden Valley looks to also be affected by this smoke late tonight/early tomorrow morning. Nocturnal drainage flow looks to bring smoke from the Kelley fire south into the Northern Magic Valley near Gooding and Shoshone. Smoke from the Rim fire looks to be entering Idaho along the Oregon-Idaho-Nevada border and moving to the northeast and exiting the state near Salmon.
There is a threat of isolated thunderstorms over Eastern Highlands this afternoon. Relative humidity values will fall into the lower teens across southern Idaho, except in the southern and eastern highlands. Upper level ridging will build this weekend allowing much drier air aloft. By Monday, ridge begins to move east, allowing moisture into western Idaho Monday morning with chance for elevated thunderstorms Monday afternoon. This pattern will continue through Thursday. Today, mixing heights look to be 5-6 K feet AGL in the Treasure Valley and 8-10 K feet AGL across the rest of southern Idaho with moderate to good dispersion. Transport winds from the west-northwest in the Treasure and Magic Valleys at 10-15 mph and west-southwest across the rest of southern Idaho at 10-20 mph.
Isolated showers and thunderstorms in elevated regions along I-90 and through the Central Panhandle are likely this afternoon with seasonal temperatures through Saturday. Sunday looks to be around 5 degrees warmer than normal while Monday brings increasing chances for precipitation, up to isolated in the Idaho Panhandle. Today, 3-5 K feet AGL mixing with transport winds from the southwest at 15-20 mph can be expected.
6 emergency monitors have been installed in Idaho to help monitor smoke impacts from wildfires:
· DEQ has installed monitors in Mountain Home, Fairfield, Ketchum, and east Boise. The information can be found at http://app.airsis.com/USFS/fleet.aspx
o Fairfield – #Idaho1000
o Mountain Home - #Idaho1002
o Ketchum - #Idaho1005
o Boise - #Idaho1003
· The USFS installed monitors in Atlanta and Challis. The information can be found at http://www.wrcc.dri.edu/cgi-bin/smoke.pl
o Atlanta monitor is Smoke#13
o Challis monitor is Smoke#21
o Users should be aware that the Forest Service site reports the data in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). To convert from UTS to Mountain Daylight Time, subtract 6 hours.
View DEQ near-real time monitoring at: http://airquality.deq.idaho.gov/
Smoke forecasts are dependent on predicted fire growth and weather. If conditions change unexpectedly, impacts could occur. When visibility starts to go below 5 miles, sensitive groups should minimize outdoor activities. Everyone else should minimize prolonged or physical activity outdoors. Refer to the Smoke and Health Tab on the Idaho Smoke Information Blog for additional health information.
Your eyes are your best tools to determine if it’s safe to be outside. Even if you smell smoke, the air quality may still be good.
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups
Less than 1