Another day of thick smoke, low air quality


PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) – The wildfire smoke has now been around for 5 days. For some locations, like Salem and the communities in Marion county, potentially 6 days.

The low visibility and poor air quality makes for a tough environment. Unfortunately, there isn’t going to be a swift recovery from this and Monday is likely going to start very similar to the last few days. With air quality hurting, there is an Air Quality Warning until noon, which I expect to be extended for some locations, if not all.

The start of the week may need to start with a little patience. However, I do hope for improvements for the Oregon coast Monday and then eventually a push for cleaner air on Tuesday for the valley. This may not reach all the communities tucked into the Cascades.

With the window opening slow for better air, Monday will likely begin with hazardous or very unhealthy air quality levels. That means you should again limit your time outside and doing strenuous work. Not everyone has that luxury, but if you can take breaks inside and protected, that is your best approach.

Here comes some of the better news. Tuesday’s smoke forecast is showing the advance of smoke free air for the Oregon coast and parts of the Willamette Valley. Again, this is just a model. It may be better or it may be slightly off. I am going to lean on the side of those conditions being better and more hopeful for even the spots that are showing smoke on the eastern sides of the counties in the valley.

Now weather models are still consistent about bringing in the rain late Monday for the coast and then early Tuesday for parts of the valley. It’s not a massive amount of moisture but it should be a system that brings in measurable rain. With development again during the evening hours on Tuesday. This system is going to be the first step to helping our air quality improve and the smoke to thin out.

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