Wildfire smoke impacting air quality at Lake Tahoe

Staff Report
The air quality is unhealthy-to-hazardous in South Lake Tahoe while Truckee is mostly free of smoke Sunday morning.

TRUCKEE, Calif. — A wildfire burning out of control south of Yosemite National Park is impacting air quality Sunday morning at Lake Tahoe and the impacts will likely last for the next couple of days.

The Oak Fire, burning in Mariposa County near Midpines, has grown to 14,281 acres as of Sunday morning and the prevailing winds are sending smoke to the north, through the basin.

The air quality according to is hazardous to unhealthy Sunday morning in South Lake Tahoe. The air quality improves slightly on the northern and western shores. Truckee is mostly free from smoke Sunday morning but the service said impacts may be more widespread by the afternoon.

Until conditions improve in highly impacted areas, officials say outdoor activities should be limited or avoided altogether.

The National Weather Service in Reno said early Sunday morning, “High concentrations of near-surface smoke are currently present across the Eastern Sierra into southern Douglas County, resulting in a deterioration of air quality across the area. Smoke guidance suggests that near-surface smoke will reach the Greater Lake Tahoe and Truckee area, then push northeast into far northeast California and the Greater Reno area by early afternoon as our typical westerly winds develop.”

The service is forecasting the smoke to impact the basin into Tuesday.

The seasonable hot conditions will continue through the next week with valley temperatures hovering around 100 then reach to near record highs later in the week.

“Monsoonal moisture will surge into the region starting Monday with increasing chances for showers and thunderstorms through the week and into the weekend,” the service said.

Officials say to stay hydrated, avoid strenuous outdoor activities, and check in on vulnerable neighbors, family or friends.

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