Friday, July 2, 2021

Independence day weekend smoke forecast, and a task for everyone

Satellite imagery and ground- based fine particle pollution monitoring data show that smoke from the Lytton fire in British Columbia and the Lava Fire in northern California is mostly overhead right now. Gray polygons are smoke plumes (darker gray = denser smoke) and the circles/ squares are monitors measuring Good (and some Moderate) air quality. 

Forecast models are showing that some of this smoke will make it down to the surface in eastern WA later today. This is also true for the higher terrain of the Cascades. However we're not expecting anything worse than Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups. Please continue to follow the five-day smoke forecast

We're expecting winds to shift July 4-5, which should improve air quality statewide... if we can avoid any new fires. Local fireworks shows could result in levels as high as Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups near the demonstrations. 

Puget Sound lowlands forecast

We do not expect smoke to reach the ground in most of western WA, so air quality should be mostly Good to Moderate. A few pretty sunsets are possible. 

Be Ready to Protect Your Health

Now that wildfires are here, it’s time to be prepared to protect ourselves from the smoke that comes along with them. Stock up on necessary supplies, like MERV 13 filters for DIY box fan filters or upgrading your HVAC system—they fly off the shelf when the smoke gets bad. For more information check out the health tab or visit WA DOH’s Smoke from Fires webpage.

And lastly, a task for everyone

We encourage our readers to submit brief comments explaining creative ways they celebrate our Independence, while minimizing fire and smoke risks. Sometime next week, we'll publish our top picks from the submissions. Have a happy and safe 4th of July!

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