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Front Range Air Quality Forecast & Colorado Smoke Outlook

FRONT RANGE AIR QUALITY FORECAST:
Tuesday, July 26, 2016, 9:00 AM MDT

Ozone concentrations are expected to be in the Good to Moderate range on Tuesday. Unusually sensitive people should consider reducing prolonged or heavy outdoor exertion from noon until 10 PM on Tuesday.

Fine Particulate Matter concentrations are expected to be in the Good category on Tuesday.

Carbon Monoxide concentrations are expected to be in the Good category on Tuesday.

Nitrogen Dioxide concentrations are expected to be in the Good category on Tuesday.

Visibility is expected to be Moderate to Poor on Tuesday.


COLORADO SMOKE OUTLOOK:
Tuesday, July 26, 2016, 9:00 AM MDT

Air Quality Health Advisory for Wildfire Smoke

Issued for Hayden Pass Wildfire in Fremont County approximately 5 miles southwest of Coaldale.
Issued at 9:00 AM MDT, Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Issued by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment

Affected Area: western parts of Fremont County. Locations include, but are not limited to Cotopaxi, Coaldale, Hillside, Howard and Texas Creek.

Advisory in Effect: 9:00 AM MDT, Tuesday, July 26, 2016 to 9:00 AM MDT, Wednesday, July 27, 2016>

Public Health Recommendations: 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.

Outlook: Smoke concentrations remain at unhealthy levels in Cotopaxi Tuesday morning. Similar smoke concentrations are likely in Coaldale. The wind will be variable in direction on Tuesday, and could become quite gusty during the afternoon as scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected to develop. These thunderstorms could send smoke in any direction. Light winds are expected late Tuesday night and Wednesday morning. This will allow smoke to drain towards the Arkansas River, once again impacting Coaldale and Cotopaxi with periods of moderate to possibly heavy smoke. Lighter smoke will be possible in locations such as Howard, Texas Creek and possibly into northern parts of Custer County as far south as Westcliffe.


SMOKE FROM OTHER WILDFIRES:
The 26,067 acre Beaver Creek Wildfire is located in northwestern Jackson County approximately 24 miles northwest of Walden. Increasing west to northwesterly winds are expected at the fire on Tuesday which would tend to send smoke to locations east and southeast of the fire. However, a few isolated dry thunderstorms are also possible in the area. These storms could produce erratic, gusty winds and send smoke in any direction. Light winds are expected at the fire late Tuesday night and drainage flow will likely pool smoke, perhaps heavy at times, to northern parts of North Park into Wednesday morning. This would mainly include the area to the north of the community of Cowdrey to the Wyoming state line.

The 750 acre Bench Wildfire is located in western Moffat County approximately 20 miles northwest of Elk Springs. Increasing west to southwesterly winds on Tueday will likely send any smoke to locations east and northeast of the fire, perhaps bringing light to moderate smoke to Greystone or Sunbeam. Isolated, mainly dry thunderstorms are also possible Tuesday afternoon which could produce erratic winds and send smoke in any direction. Light winds are expected near the fire late Tuesday night and Wednesday morning which will likely drain smoke towards the Yampa River.

What if there is a wildfire or smoke in your area that is not reported above?

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. Fine particulates may reach the Unhealthy category where smoke is heavy. Consider limiting outdoor activity when moderate to heavy smoke is present. People with heart or lung disease, older adults, and children should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion; everyone else should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion. 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.

For additional information about smoke, visit:
http://www.colorado.gov/airquality/wildfire.aspx

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