Forecasts for wildfire smoke

wildfire smoke pm25

Above: The forecast for the maximum levels of wildfire particulate matter (PM 2.5) for August 14, 2017. Experimental product by U.S. Forest Service/BlueSky.

(Originally published at 10:40 a.m. MDT August 14, 2017)

These maps are experimental products developed by U.S. Forest Service researchers using the BlueSky modeling framework, in this case to predict the distribution of very small particulate matter (PM2.5) produced by vegetation fires. Their efforts link a variety of independent models of fire information, fuel loading, fire consumption, fire emissions, and smoke dispersion.

The map above is for Monday, August 14 and the one below is for Tuesday, August 15.

wildfire smoke pm25
The forecast for the maximum levels of wildfire particulate matter (PM 2.5) for August 15, 2017. Experimental product by U.S. Forest Service/BlueSky.

Here is information from the EPA about particulate matter:

Particulate matter contains microscopic solids or liquid droplets that are so small that they can be inhaled and cause serious health problems. Particles less than 10 micrometers in diameter [PM10] pose the greatest problems, because they can get deep into your lungs, and some may even get into your bloodstream.

Fine particles (PM2.5) are the main cause of reduced visibility (haze) in parts of the United States, including many of our treasured national parks and wilderness areas. They can only be seen with an electron microscope. Fine particles are produced from all types of combustion, including motor vehicles, power plants, residential wood burning, forest fires, agricultural burning, and some industrial processes.

Typos, let us know HERE, and specify which article. Please read the commenting rules before you post a comment.

Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

2 thoughts on “Forecasts for wildfire smoke”

  1. Thanks so much Bill for all the helpful information. Is there anyway you can post about new fire alerts in my area so I can stay ready for evacuation. We live on Wildlife Lane above You Bet Road off of HWY 174 Colfax highway halfway between Grass Valley and Colfax. If not no big deal just wondering and I thank you for all your helpful work with this site.
    Best regards,
    Deborah Van Stone-Stapleton

    1. Check with Cal Fire Nevada-Placer-Yuba Unit and the Placer County Sheriff for appropriate apts to obtain real time alerts of an evolving wildfire. I believe Placer County also has a reverse 9-1-1 system. Cal Fire web site Get Ready, Set, Go; good stuff just in case. But of course continue to follow this site.


Comments are closed.