Worsening wildfires lead to a smoky Kansas City

Weather

California has really been hit hard with the wildfires this summer.

So far this year, fires have burned over 3.2 million acres, destroyed over 4,200 structures and killed 25 people, according to California’s Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. The August Complex fire has burned 877,477 acres, making it the largest in the state’s history!

And all of that smoke has been turning skies across the western U.S. orange or even red in the past few weeks.

While our skies in Kansas City won’t look anything like this over the coming days, there’s enough thick smoke in place to create hazy skies and cool sunrise/sunset photos moving forward.

The jet stream is currently set up in such a way where the smoke from western fires is being picked up, transported north into the Northern Great Plains of Montana and the Dakotas, before being pushed back southeast over the Great Lakes and Central Plains, including Kansas and Missouri.

This “conveyor belt” of sorts will continue to funnel in the smoke this week.

Jet stream (arrows) picking up smoke and transporting it to the Midwest.
Skycast (air quality forecast) is in the moderate category for Tuesday, September 15th.

Obviously, air quality, once again, will worsen starting Tuesday and will likely continue to be an issue until our next cold front moves through on Thursday.

The lack of accompanying rain may let hazy skies return afterwards, as the jet stream pattern remains relatively the same through this weekend.

We’ll be watching out for any changes in the upper-level air pattern and our next rain chance on FOX 4 this week!

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