May 17, 2014

Weekend Edition: Santa Ana winds end and relief comes to Southern California

The week from Hades has ended in Southern California and today winds have swung about so that fog and humidity is coming onshore. This will give the firefighters a chance to get on top of the fires that are still burning. Air quality is not good in southern California and ozone is high in the high desert east of LA, probably due to smoke precursors. PM is still high and bands of elevated smoke have been seen east and south of the Salton Sea, into Mexico. The local NBC affiliate station has published an air quality information page.

The Tomahawk fire in New Mexico continues to throw a plume eastward into New Mexico and fires in Manitoba are causing a broad area of smoke in southern Canada. These fires are likely to be agricultural burning.

Update: May 18, 2014 11:00 EDT

Scattered areas of the US have moderate levels of PM2.5 AQI. The fires in California are subsiding and the air quality is improving. The HMS identified smoke plume from the Skunk Fire in Arizona has been tracked on the GOES-14 SRSOR imagery in 1 minute resolution. On the attached link from Scott Bachmeier of CIMSS in Wisconsin, three panels are shown. On the left is the current GOES operational product with 15 minute resolution. The middle panel shows the new operational CONUS GOES-R series time step of ~5 minutes and the right panel shows the special high resolution 1-min data which will be available on the mesoscale.

The Skunk fire is in the middle of the image and can be seen heading eastward near the middle of the frame.

Posted by Ray Hoff at May 17, 2014 7:30 PM
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