Smoke Impact Summary #22 Soberanes Wildfire
Air Basin: North Center Coast Alaska IMT Type 1
Issued for September 10th, 2016 Prepared by: Gary M. Curcio ARA
Time 10:00 PM Kathleen Stewart ARA (T)
Fire Status & Key Points:
1. September 10th the total fire acreage was reported at 103,847 acres.
2. There was an additional 605 acres of new fire growth from the previous day.
3. Projected smoke emission impact for tomorrow morning, Sunday September 11th is estimated at 2,650 acres. This includes:
a. 650 acres for the burnout operation along the Coastal Ridge Rd between Anderson Peak and Marble Peak. This was successfully completed to secure this portion of the fire. The burnout operation is now expected to extend from Marble Peak to Rodeo Flats. Over time when this is accomplished as much as 9,000 acres can be consumed.
b. 2,000 acres for active burning fire on the south and southeast fire perimeter. The North Fork and Lost Valley drainages responded to forecasted increased instability by making respective fire runs. The Haines Index was 5. During these runs much of the smoke generated was transported west and eventually south.
VIIRS Satellite imagery 8:30 PM 9/10/16 shows the areas of major smoke production, red dot squares. These heat signatures were recorded in the last 12 hours. The fire perimeter is from the previous night’s IR Flight. At Marble Peak a successful burnout was conducted and Lost Valley & N. Fork drainages experienced fire runs.
4. Extended Outlook for the next 7 days, September 9 – 15, “future smoke emission acreage” was projected on September 9th at 9,000 acres. This estimate will be revised as needed.
Long Term Outlook for beyond 2 weeks, the “big box concept” was projected at 51,200 acres.
5. The importance of instability proved itself today as fires became more active and intense.
Smoke columns went to the heights of 12,000 to 15,000 feet. With a successful burnout and drainages expanding acres burned, air quality was certainly affected. In Salinas Valley Gonzales, Soledad and Greenfield fluctuated throughout the day. Big Sur, Tassajara and Cachagua experienced higher concentrations of PM2.5 due to their proximity to the fire. In Lockwood, south of the fire, PM2.5 levels varied throughout the day. On Sunday September 11th instability is forecasted to return. Wind speed and gustiness are expected to be higher than today. This improves smoke dispersion but it also provides the opportunity for increased smoke production. Also wind direction and topography are in alignment in the Lost Valley drainage facilitating another major fire run.
6. IR Fire Perimeter & Modis Heat Signatures 9/10/16 at 9:00 PM
IR Flight heat intensities from the previous night are identified. Areas of intense heat (red shaded areas) cannot be seen. They are behind the Modis red squares & dots. IR Flight for scattered heat is represented by yellow shaded areas. The Southern part of the fire’s perimeter continues to be the most active. Smoke impact was kept to the interior of the Coastal Range for most of the morning. However in the afternoon instability facilitated increased burning intensity.
7. Soberanes Fire Trajectories (12 hours at 10m, 500m, and 1000m) on September 11th starting at 3:00 PM. Major sources of smoke were used as a starting point for the trajectories. The trajectory points are Marble Peak, Lost Valley, and North Fork of Big Sur River.
8.The potential horizontal extent of smoke from the Soberanes Fire and others is displayed below from the NOAA Hazard Mapping System (left) and AirNow (right) for September 10th, 2016 (PM). NOAA Hazard Mapping System shaded areas represent three types of smoke: Light (green), Medium (yellow) and Red (dense). These colors are not defined by their height above ground. However, they do provide valuable information concerning the horizontal expanse of wildfire’s smoke plume and its zone of influence. These interpretations seem to underestimate the plume expanse when reviewing observations at PM 2.5 stations.