Smoke from the Monument fire along Highway 299 between Burnt Ranch and Del Loma | Photo: Elizabeth Velasco, Public Information Officer.
A joint message from the North Coast Unified Air Quality Management District (NCUAQMD) and partners:
The Monument Fire, McFarland Fire, River Complex, and McCash fires continue to remain active and producing smoke. USFS Air Resource Advisors on the fires indicate that with variable winds forecasted, smoke is not expected to significantly clear in areas where it currently is today. Mountain communities near active fires will continue to see Hazardous to Very Unhealthy conditions, with little relief as smoke is added to these valleys.Areas south of the fires will see conditions worsen as the inversion breaks and smoke mixes down to the surface before improving later today and overnight. Increasing area-wide smoke affecting even the coastal communities by this afternoon.
Air quality monitors and the current Air Quality Index (AQI) for communities should be viewed at https://fire.airnow.gov. USFS Air Resource Advisors (ARA) assigned to the Monument/McFarland and River Complex fires provides daily ARA Smoke Outlook Forecasts at https://wildlandfiresmoke.net/outlooks.
ALERT – Hazardous Conditions (AQI 301 and higher, 24 hr avg):
- Trinity Center/Coffee Creek – Very Unhealthy to Hazardous
ADVISORY – Unhealthy to Very Unhealthy Conditions (AQI 151-300 range, 24 hr avg):
- Orleans – Overall Unhealthy, better in morning, improvement overnight
- Weaverville – Very Unhealthy to Hazardous
- Lewiston – Unhealthy to Very Unhealthy possible Hazardous periods
- Junction City – Very Unhealthy to Hazardous
- Douglas City – Very Unhealthy to Hazardous
- Hayfork – Very Unhealthy to Hazardous
- Platina area – Unhealthy to Very Unhealthy with possible Hazardous periods Regional Smoke Outlooks – Good, Moderate, to USG Conditions (AQI 0-150 range, 24 hr avg)
Humboldt County: (see above Advisory)
- Eureka (including Scotia to Trinidad) – Moderate, possible periods of USG in afternoon with smoke aloft
- Weitchpec – Moderate to USG
- Hoopa Valley – Overall USG, Unhealthy midday, then improving
- Willow Creek – Overall USG, Unhealthy midday, then improving
- Garberville, Redway – Overall Moderate with periods of USG, improving overnight
Del Norte County:
- Crescent City – Good to Moderate
- Gasquet – Moderate to USG
- Klamath – Moderate, USG in evening
Trinity County: (see above Advisory and Alerts)
Smoke Impact Summary
The Monument Fire, McFarland Fire, River Complex, and McCash fires continue to remain active and producing smoke. USFS Air Resource Advisor on the Monument & McFarland Complex indicates that with variable winds forecasted, smoke is not expected to significantly clear in areas where it currently is today. Mountain communities near active fires will continue to see Hazardous to Very Unhealthy conditions, with little relief as smoke is added to these valleys. Communities in the Trinity River drainage west of the fire may be impacted by smoke transported from fires further to the north on top of smoke draining down the valley but will see improvement as the upcanyon winds clear out the smoke early afternoon. Areas south of the fires will see conditions worsen as the inversion breaks and smoke mixes down to the surface before improving later today and overnight.
The USFS Air Resource Advisor on the River, and McCash fires indicates that for today expect very light winds which will be insufficient to clear smoke from the valleys. Tomorrow will bring down slope winds, adding more smoke to what lingers through today. Expect dense smoke to persist in the steep mountain valleys, with increasing area-wide smoke affecting even the coastal communities by this afternoon.
If you are in areas that continue to be Unhealthy to Hazardous air quality, it is really important to take health and safety precautions. Take actions to limit outdoor activity and smoke exposure. Learn how to protect yourself from wildfire smoke. Visit the Wildfire Smoke Resources section of our webpage at www.ncuaqmd.org.
In Trinity County, High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) Filters have been placed at the following locations:
- Trinity County Library, 351 Main St., Weaverville Hours: Monday/Wednesday/Friday 1:00pm - 6:00pm; Tuesday/Thursday 10:00am - 6:00 pm
Particulate Matter (PM2.5) monitors are located in Crescent City, Weitchpec, Hoopa, Willow Creek, Weaverville, Hayfork, Eureka, and Garberville. Air quality monitors and the current Air Quality Index (AQI) for communities should be viewed at https://fire.airnow.gov
Health Information & Actions To Protect Yourself From Smoke Impacts
Concentrations of smoke may vary depending upon location, weather, and distance from the fire. Smoke from wildfires and structure fires contain harmful chemicals that can affect your health. Smoke can cause eye and throat irritation, coughing, and difficulty breathing. People who are at greatest risk of experiencing symptoms due to smoke include: those with respiratory disease (such as asthma), those with heart disease, young children, and older adults.
These sensitive populations should stay indoors and avoid prolonged activity. All others should limit prolonged or heavy activity and time spent outdoors. Even healthy adults can be affected by smoke. Seek medical help if you have symptoms that worsen or become severe.
Follow these general precautions to protect your health during a smoke event:
- Minimize or stop outdoor activities, especially exercise.
- Stay indoors with windows and doors closed as much as possible.
- Do not run fans that bring smoky outdoor air inside – examples include swamp coolers, whole-house fans, and fresh air ventilation systems.
- Run your air-conditioner only if it does not bring smoke in from the outdoors. Change the standard air conditioner filter to a medium or high efficiency filter. If available, use the “re-circulate” or “recycle” setting on the unit.
- Do not smoke, fry food, or do other things that will create indoor air pollution.
Consider leaving the area until smoke conditions improve if you have repeated coughing, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, wheezing, chest tightness or pain, palpitations, nausea, unusual fatigue, lightheadedness.
For further information, visit the District’s website at www.ncuaqmd.org or call the District’s Wildfire Response Coordinator at (707) 443-3093 x122.