Idaho Smoke Map

Idaho Smoke Map Legend

**(Preliminary Data Warning: Data found on the map shown below is preliminary and is subject to change. Data is in local standard time format - no adjustment for daylight savings time. The map is not able to display the temporary monitors. Check the AIR QUALITY NOW tab below for links for these monitors.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

07/17/14 Idaho DEQ Smoke Forecast

Updated 1000 MDT Thursday, July 17, 2014

Valid through Noon MDT Friday, July 18, 2014

Smoke Outlook

Garden Valley continues to see impacts from the Whiskey Complex; however not to the same extent as Idaho City.  Idaho City only received 6 hours of clearing last night and is currently experiencing heavy impacts.  Idaho City is forecast to be Unhealthy For Sensitive Groups today.  Satellite imagery indicates that smoke has settled in drainage basins from the Clearwater south to the Lower Snake River Plain.  The Treasure Valley is currently experiencing smoke impacts from the Whiskey Complex as well as smoke advected into the area from Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia. The north Idaho Panhandle is also currently experiencing impacts from the Canadian and Washington fires with all DEQ monitors reporting elevated concentrations this morning except for a cluster from the eastern Magic Valley to Pocatello and south to the Utah border.  High afternoon temperatures and high mixing heights will cause this smoke to lift and clear out this afternoon before settling once the sun sets.

The weather is currently playing out as forecasts indicated yesterday with winds aloft becoming slightly more westerly with slower wind speeds as high pressure settles in overhead.  Surface winds will follow the terrain and be from the west-northwest in the Treasure Valley and west-southwest from Magic Valley east to the Upper Snake River Plain.  A weak wave and associated frontal passage will move over Idaho today.  There is a slight chance for thunderstorms along the Idaho-Nevada border this afternoon as well as in eastern Idaho generally northeast of a line from Clayton to Blackfoot to Alpine, Wyoming.  These storms provide the potential for frequent lightning and gusty winds around 50 mph.  By Friday, monsoon moisture may leak into Idaho along the Utah border this afternoon providing a chance for isolated storms.  Temperatures will be hot today with a slight cooling tomorrow.  This pattern of westerly flow is forecast to stay over Idaho through Saturday. 

Smoke impacts today are forecast to be higher and more widespread as westerly flow will provide transport of Oregon and Washington wildfires into Idaho.  There have been several holdover fires in the Boise National Forest that will need to be watched for future impacts.  Expect to see smoke and haze across most of the state today.

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. 

AQI Category
Visibility (miles)
Good
11+
Moderate
6-10
Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups
3-5
Unhealthy
1½  -2¾
Very Unhealthy
1-1¼ 
Hazardous
Less than 1

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