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Front Range Air Quality Forecast & Colorado Smoke Outlook

FRONT RANGE AIR QUALITY FORECAST:
Friday, October 18, 2019, 2:00 PM MDT

Ozone concentrations are expected to be in the Good category Friday through Monday.

Fine Particulate Matter concentrations are expected to be in the Good to Moderate range Friday through Monday. Moderate concentrations of fine particulates are most likely for locations within the Denver Metro area, and northward into southern and central Weld County including Greeley. In these areas unusually sensitive people should consider reducing heavy or prolonged exertion Friday through Monday.

Carbon Monoxide concentrations are expected to be in the Good category Friday through Monday.

Nitrogen Dioxide concentrations are expected to be in the Good category Friday through Monday.

Visibility is expected to be Good to Moderate Friday through Monday.

COLORADO SMOKE OUTLOOK:
Sunday, October 20, 2019, 8:00 AM MDT

Fire activity and smoke production has decreased from the 8,705 acre Decker fire, located in the Sangre de Cristo Wilderness, approximately 2 miles south of Salida. However, gusty west to northwesterly winds could occasionally flare up parts of the fire on Sunday and produce brief periods of moderate to heavy smoke. This smoke would generally be transported to the east and northeast, mainly impacting western portions of Fremont County. The winds will shift to a more west to southwesterly direction Sunday night and Monday morning, but remain brisk. Periods of smoke will remain possible for Salida, Cleora, Wellsville, Howard, Coaldale, and Cotopaxi, so unusually sensitive people should decrease prolonged or heavy exertion in these areas through at least Monday morning.

The 1,235 acre Middle Mamm fire is located in southern Garfield County, near the Garfield/Mesa County line, approximately 10 miles south of Rifle. Snow showers Sunday morning will decrease fire activity significantly, with minimal smoke production expected through at least Monday morning.

The 785 acre Cow Creek is located in eastern Ouray County approximately 9 miles east of Ridgway. Snow showers Sunday morning will decrease fire activity significantly, with minimal smoke production expected through at least Monday morning.

The 720 acre Granite Lake fire is located in eastern Pitkin County, approximately 12 miles east of Aspen. Snow showers Sunday morning will decrease fire activity significantly, with minimal smoke production expected through at least Monday morning.

Areas of smoke from an old prescribed burn in western Archuleta County have decreased due to an increase in relative humidity. Smoke levels should remain good to moderate through at least Sunday evening, however smoke may begin to increase again early Monday morning in this area. The area impacted is confined mainly to locations along State Highway 160 to the east of Yellowjacket Pass, eastward to the town of Piedra. In this area, unusually sensitive people should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion through at least Monday morning.


Light to moderate concentrations of smoke are also possible near additional small wildfires and prescribed burns around the state.

What if there is a wildfire or smoke in your area?
The focus of the Colorado Smoke Outlook is on large fires (e.g., greater than 100 acres in size). Nevertheless, smoke from smaller fires, prescribed fires, and/or smoke from new fires not yet known to CDPHE air quality meteorologists may cause locally heavy smoke. If there is smoke in your neighborhood, see the public health recommendations below.

Public health recommendations for areas affected by smoke:
If smoke is thick or becomes thick in your neighborhood you may want to remain indoors. This is especially true for those with heart disease, respiratory illnesses, the very young, and the elderly. Consider limiting outdoor activity when moderate to heavy smoke is present. Consider relocating temporarily if smoke is present indoors and is making you ill. IF VISIBILITY IS LESS THAN 5 MILES IN SMOKE IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD, SMOKE HAS REACHED LEVELS THAT ARE UNHEALTHY.

Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment/APCD/Technical Services Program
visit us at: http://www.colorado.gov/airquality - all data are preliminary