Washington wildfires result in air quality advisory in Canada

Sep 8 2020, 5:07 pm

Wildfire smoke from Washington State that has made its way north into Canada has now resulted in an air quality advisory for the area of Vancouver, British Columbia.

Smoke from wildfires burning in Washington, Oregon, and California “moved over our region this morning and is now impacting ground-level fine particulate matter concentrations,” the advisory said.

“Long-range transport of wildfire smoke from the United States has impacted air quality levels throughout much of southern BC including on Vancouver Island, Coastal mainland, the Okanagan, as well as the Kootenays and boundary,” the BC ministry said.

However, the ministry also states that “during a wildfire, smoke conditions can change quickly over short distances and can vary considerably hour-by-hour.”

It noted that the affected regions are likely to be impacted by the wildfire smoke “over the next 24 to 48 hours.”

Oregon Governor Kate Brown issued a warning this afternoon, stating that the next 24 hours will continue to see a highly volatile wind warning that has played a major part in the expansion of fires burning throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Currently, members of the Washington State Department of Natural Resources are fighting numerous fires that have been birthed over the last day, including a large one new Enumclaw that has seen major access points blocked off for safety.

Washington Governor Inslee held a press conference this afternoon, stating that “this is an unprecedented and heartbreaking event.”

“More acres burned yesterday than in 12 of the last fire seasons in the state of Washington,” added Governor Inslee.

Two large fires continue to rage in central Washington State, while numerous other fires relentlessly grow over time, with added help by extremely windy conditions.

With wind set to maintain at high speeds for the next day or more, smoke from the entire West Coast will continue to affect the air quality of their neighboring regions. It is advised to keep on top of advisories and evacuation warnings via the Washington DNR Wildfire social media.

With files from Eric Zimmer

Eric ZimmerEric Zimmer

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