National Preparedness Level raised to 2

NIFC web site
Screenshot from the NIFC web site, October 18, 2019.

The week after the National Interagency Coordination Center announced they were going to stop producing the daily Situation Report and only publish it weekly, they raised the National Preparedness level to 2.

Preparedness Level 2The change occurred at 2 p.m. MDT Friday, “…due to an increase in resource mobilization, competition for resources, significant incidents occurring in multiple geographic areas and critical fire weather conditions in those geographic areas.”

As of today, October 18, fourteen active large fires have burned more than 228,000 acres in five states. Twelve new large fires were reported this week.

Firefighting resources committed to fires today:

  • 87 hand crews
  • 166 engines
  • 22 helicopters
  • 3,181 personnel

“Fire Season” is now “Fire Year”.

Red Flag Warnings
Red Flag Warnings and Fire Weather Watches, current at 6:15 p.m MDT October, 18, 2019 Click to enlarge.

(Red Flag Warnings can be modified throughout the day as NWS offices around the country update and revise their weather forecasts.)

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to LM. Typos or errors, report them HERE.

Red Flag Warnings October 9, 2019

Above: Red Flag Warnings October 9, 2019. Times are CDT.

The areas under Red Flag Warnings are similar to Tuesdays, except Wyoming dropped out and a section of northwest New Mexico was added.

The  wind event continues in some areas of California with predictions for 15 to 30 mph winds gusting at 40 to 50 along with single digit humidity.

Pacific Gas and Electric expanded their power shutoff, increasing the number of addresses affected from 600,000 to 800,000. The company’s web site is having problems keeping up with the traffic, and is occasionally non-responsive.

(Red Flag Warnings can be modified throughout the day as NWS offices around the country update and revise their weather forecasts.)

Red Flag Warnings in six states

Above: Red Flag Warnings (red) and Fire Weather Watches (yellow), updated at 2:25 p.m. PDT Oct. 8, 2019. Times are CDT. 

Red Flag Warnings and Fire Weather Watches for gusty winds and low humidity have been posted for areas within six states. Times shown are CDT.

(Red Flag Warnings can be modified throughout the day as NWS offices around the country update and revise their weather forecasts.)

Red Flag Warnings this weekend in six states

Red Flag Warnings 9-28
Red Flag Warnings September 28 and 29, 2019. NWS. Click to enlarge.

Red Flag Warnings are in the forecast for areas in six states this weekend.

On Saturday an area in California and Nevada south of Reno on the Sierra front of Mono and Mineral Counties will be under a Red Flag Warning for 25 to 35 mph winds with relative humidities of 15 to 25 percent.

On Sunday some locations in Utah, Colorado, Kansas, and Nebraska should expect gusty winds, dry fuels, and low humidities.

(The area shown on the map in Wyoming is for dense fog until 1 p.m. Saturday.)

(Red Flag Warnings can be modified throughout the day as NWS offices around the country update and revise their weather forecasts.)

Red Flag Warning in Northern California into Wednesday

Winds gusting at 30-40 mph with humidity in the teens

Red Flag Warning wildfire weather
Red Flag Warning in effect until 9 a.m. PDT Wednesday, September 25.

A Red Flag Warning is in effect for portions of interior Northern California until Wednesday morning.

Building high pressure will result in gusty north to east wind
developing Monday and persisting into Wednesday. Combined with
warming temperatures and lowering humidity, this will result in
critical fire weather conditions across portions of Interior
Northern California.

— North wind 10 to 25 mph with local gusts 30 to 40 mph.

— Daytime humidity will be in the 10 to 20 percent range
with poor overnight recoveries of 30 to 40 percent.

— The highest threat will be in the western portions of the Sacramento Valley and adjacent foothills, where the highest wind gusts and lowest
humidity are expected.

(Red Flag Warnings can be modified throughout the day as NWS offices around the country update and revise their weather forecasts.)

Wildfire smoke to affect Oregon, Idaho, Colorado, and Montana on Sunday

Red Flag Warnings for areas in California, Nevada, Oregon, and Wyoming

forecast near surface smoke
Forecast for smoke near the Earth’s surface at 6 p.m. MDT September 15, 2019.

Smoke from wildfires are producing smoke that forecasters expect to affect large portions of Idaho, Montana, and Colorado on Sunday. The map above is the forecast for 6 p.m. MDT.

The largest producers of smoke today are:

  • Oregon: the 13,000-acre, largest ever prescribed fire on  the Fremont-Winema National Forest just east of Crater Lake National Park, south of Highway 138 and west of Highway 97.
  • Idaho: a wildfire in state-protected lands in the southwest corner of the state 77 miles southwest of Boise, ID and 32 miles south-southeast of Jordan Valley, OR.
  • California: The 53,148-acre Walker Fire 16 miles south of Susanville, CA.
  • Colorado: Decker Fire, 6 miles south of Salida, CO, a fire 36 miles southwest of Salida, and two fires 20 and 40 miles east of Durango.

Red Flag Warnings are in effect Sunday for areas of California, Nevada, Oregon, and Wyoming.

Red Flag Warnings
Red Flag Warnings, September 15, 2019.

(Red Flag Warnings can be modified throughout the day as NWS offices around the country update and revise their weather forecasts.)