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US wildfires to blame for haze over Fraser Valley

Last Updated Aug 29, 2017 at 6:23 am PDT

(Courtesy @DonnaMMedeiro via Twitter)

An air quality analyst says smoke has been carried in from fires in Oregon, Washington state and Northern California

Metro Vancouver says there's no indication the current smoke will affect air quality here right now

Teams are keeping a close eye on monitoring centres across the region, from Horseshoe Bay to Hope

ABBOTSFORD (NEWS 1130) – People in the Fraser Valley are again reporting smoke filtering into the area, about two weeks after a heavy wildfire haze finally lifted.

Metro Vancouver Air Quality Analyst Kyle Howe has confirmed the haze over the eastern part of that region is due to wildfire smoke, but not from any of BC’s fires.

“Indications on satellite imagery were most of the smoke was coming from wildfires in the United States,” he says, mainly those in Oregon, Washington State and California.

For now, Howe says there’s no indication of the smoke affecting ground-level concentrations of particulate matter right now, but teams are keeping a very close eye on the situation.

“We have an extensive monitoring network that extends from Horseshoe Bay in the west all the way to Hope in the east, and we are looking at that data constantly.”

People in South Surrey, Cloverdale and Guildford started reporting being able to see the haze looking east late this afternoon.

Howe says it took a few hours for the smoke to be carried in to the eastern Fraser Valley.

“This afternoon we saw the smoke move in over the course of the afternoon, and it was a result of wildfire activity that was occuring.”

Meanwhile, crews are tackling a fire about 65 kilometres north of Hope. The Boston Bar fire is about half a hectare in size, and not threatening any homes.

There are two other fires burning near Harrison Lake, and one over the other side of the Coastal Fire Region near Squamish.