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North Ops PS Unit Manager

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Presentation on theme: "North Ops PS Unit Manager"— Presentation transcript:

1 North Ops PS Unit Manager
Fire Weather / Predictive Services John Snook North Ops PS Unit Manager IASC at Clovis CA – 4/1/08

2 Predictive Services The Predictive Services Units (PSU) at Redding and
Riverside each have three to four CWCG- hired meteorologists each, as well as two Intel staff. There is one other PSU position, which oversees RAWS coordination, NFDRS and WIMS region-wide. The PSU provide products that concentrate mainly on the 2-7 day time frame, but do have products extending out to monthly and seasonal realms. A key mission is to provide local to national-level managers the information they need to maximize the cost-efficient use of available resources. The California PSUs have positions additional to the national PS program template. These are for the purposes of Smoke Manage-ment and the heavy firefighter training workload in the region. We coordinate with CA Air Resources Board and local air districts, attempting to maximize Prescribed burning opportunities while avoiding adverse impacts on public health.

3 National Weather Service
The National Weather Service (NWS) is an agency of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Along with Predictive Services, the NWS, operating from 10 offices in 4 states, helps to deliver the R-5 Fire Weather program. The NWS concentrates on operational forecasts and warnings in the shorter term, Days 1-3. To do this, they utilize staffs of about 10 ‘Core’ forecasters, who work rotating shifts to cover all NWS program areas. Each NWS office designates a forecaster as their Fire Weather program leader. The NWS provides these products and services: Narrative fire weather forecasts (FWFs and ECCDAs), National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS) trend forecasts, the Red Flag program, Spot forecast service, some training (primarily S-290), and Met service at Incidents (IMETs). The NWS websites also provide useful climatological tools, doppler radar data, and public warning information. .

4 √ (teach any course) √ (mainly S-290)
Group that provides this product or service to CA Fire Agencies Product or Service Predictive Services Unit (at Redding and Riverside) NOAA / National Weather Service (at 10 offices) 7-Day Significant Fire Potential Product Daily Weather Outlooks (SoCal and NorCal versions) Red Flag Program (Watch, Warning, Cancellation) Fire Weather Forecast Narrative (FWF) / ECCDAs NFDRS Trend Forecasts Smoke Transport / Stability Forecast product daily Smoke Coordination Conf call at 1300 LT Spot Forecast - Prescribed Burns and WFU Spot Forecast - Wildfire Monthly Outlooks Seasonal Assessments Incident Service (IMETs) √ (State incidents) Firefighter Weather training √ (teach any course) √ (mainly S-290)

5 Redding Fire Weather Center Riverside Fire Weather Center
CONTACT INFORMATION: Redding Fire Weather Center Office: FAX: Staff: John Snook, Brenda Belongie, Steve Leach, Basil Newmerzhycky Riverside Fire Weather Center Office: FAX: Staff: Tom Rolinski, Matt Shameson and two (?) vacancies

6 Redding: Riverside: HOURS OF OPERATION IN 2008:
From about 5/10 to 11/05: 7 days/week 7 am – 5 pm Until about 5/10 and after 11/05: Mon-Fri 7 am – 5 pm Riverside: From about 5/1 to 10/31: 7 days/week 6 am – 4 pm From about 11/1 to 4/30: Mon-Fri 5:30 am – 3:30 pm

7 several of these listed
The FW AOP documents the provision of the fire weather program jointly from the Predictive Ser-vices and the National Weather Service. It has information on a host of topics, with several of these listed on the next frame. III

8 The Fire Weather Annual Operating Plan is updated annually, following
an Interagency meeting in March. The new (2008) version will be posted to the PS and NWS websites in May. Below are the main AOP sections: I. INTRODUCTION CHANGES FOR 2008 III. SERVICE AREAS FOR NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE OFFICES AND PREDICTIVE SERVICE UNITS (some very useful maps in this section) NWS SERVICES AND RESPONSIBILITIES V. WILDLAND FIRE AGENCY SERVICES AND RESPONSIBILITIES JOINT RESPONSIBILITIES VII. AGENCY SIGNATURES / EFFECTIVE DATES OF AOP APPENDICES: (Including Appendices covering Forecast parameters, Links to both NWS and PSU forecast/product examples, Coordination calls Info, PSU and NWS office contact information, and FW Program Assess- ment Team charter.

9 This is the home page of the National Predictive Services Unit at NIFC/NICC

10 Service Areas in northern California
Predictive Service Areas in northern California NE California PSA Eastside PSA Northwestern Mountain PSA North Coast PSA NOPS- Redding Sac Valley/ Foothills PSA Northern Sierra PSA Mid Coast to Mendocino PSA SF Bay Area PSA

11 Northwestern Mtns PSA Northern Sierra PSA Shasta-Trinity NF
Here are a couple of closer-up examples. Notice that the Fire Danger Rating Areas (FDRA) are the basic building blocks of a PSA. Lassen NF Klamath NF Plumas NF Shasta-Trinity NF Six Rivers NF Calfire Units Tahoe NF El Dorado NF Northwestern Mtns PSA Northern Sierra PSA

12 in Central and Southern CA SOPS- Riverside

13 Predictive Service Products:
Seven-Day Significant Fire Potential: Issued daily throughout fire season in all Geographic Areas, and year-around in CA. Has become a very popular product for many fire personnel. Daily Weather Outlook: A tool for quick self-briefings, displaying gridded humidity data and general winds for Days 1 and 2, with a PS-written Synopsis, and 3-7 day FW highlights. Monthly Fire Danger / Fire Weather Outlook: A detailed look at the month ahead, issued on the 1st of each new month. Fire Season Outlooks: Produced twice a year by both GACC’s, usually a preliminary by May 1st and final by July 1st. (Updated end of Aug if needed) ADDITIONALLY IN CALIFORNIA: Site-specific (Spot) forecasts: whenever Smoke dispersion is an issue Smoke Transport/ Stability forecast: Produced daily whenever significant burn activity is occurring (most of the year).

14

15 7-Day Significant Fire Potential
The product is broken out for each PSA within a Geographic Area, and for each of Days It combines effects of weather, fuels, and resources. Research was done on correlations between past weather (RAWS), fuel dryness levels, & large fire occurrence. Weather models are applied to predict future RAWS weather and its effect on fuel dryness. This leads to prediction of when and where potential for significant and/or large fires is greatest Days Lightning and wind events can be added as ‘triggers’. Conceptual Model Simplified

16 7-Day Significant Fire Potential Product
High Risk Days A high risk day is a day where an ignition or significant weather trigger and an appropriate level of fuel dryness combine to create conditions that historically have resulted in a significant fire event for a particular area. Combining Weather, Fuels, and Resources dddd Significant Weather or Ignition Trigger Fuel Dryness Levels Resource Information

17 . Here’s an example from a windy day in NOPS

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20 Northern California Daily Outlook…
Issued: Wednesday Feb. 13, (a good self-briefing tool) 3-7 Day Outlook Friday through Tuesday:

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24 In reviewing the recent weather, we often include precipitation PON and Temp DFN info

25 WRITTEN FORECAST SUMMARY FOR APRIL 2008: Northern California
Geographic Area Northern California Precipitation Outlook Ranging from Near Normal to Above normal. Forecast percent-of-normal range: % Temperature Outlook Near Normal to a little Below Normal, with departures ranging from +1.5º F to -3.0º F. Fuels and Fire Danger Concerns For those areas not under snow, the larger size classes of dead fuels had an extended drying opportunity during March. Low elevation annual grasses are expected to remain green through the month, with new grass growth extending to progressively higher terrain as snowpack recedes. With the current conditions, the only concern for elevated fire danger would be with a sustained dry wind, in areas where dead and/or dry 1-, 10- and 100- hr fuels, and/or dormant brush predominates. Prescribed fire implications With the dry and mild to warm March weather, much of the mid elevation burn sites have lost snow cover and are drying to the point of availability for underburn operations. Possible wet weather in early April could put this on hold, or even reverse it for a time. However these areas could recover and dry quickly in mid or late April, with the longer daylight hours. Higher elevations and some north aspects should remain snow covered thoughout the month. Miscellaneous Weather forecast confidence: Precipitation: just 55% Temperatures: 65% Resources: Engine and crew capacity are adequate for initial attack.

26 North Ops September 2007 Outlook North Ops April 2008 Outlook Example of two North Ops monthly Fire Potential maps, one from an Outlook last fire season, and the other ‘hot off the press’

27 Summary of links for routine, California PS Unit products:
7-Day Significant Fire Potential: NOPS – SOPS – Daily Weather Outlook: NOPS – SOPS – Monthly Outlook: NOPS – SOPS – Seasonal Outlook: NOPS – SOPS –

28 Other products and services provided by CA Predictive Services Units in 2008:
Briefings daily in fire season, and miscellaneous conference calls on request. We routinely hold conference with the NWS offices on fire season mornings that have either ‘Red Flag’ weather going, IMETs in field, etc.. NEW in 2008 – Available via VTC (and hopefully Web download/playback ) Training (Fire Weather…all S-series classes e.g. S-290, 390; Smoke-related, e.g. RX-410; Burn boss, e.g.RX-300; NFDRS (S-491); WIMS, ECC sessions; Weather observations) Site-specific (Spot) forecasts for prescribed burns where smoke transport is a potential issue. [Redding does of these annually!] Smoke Transport /Stability Forecast Daily Smoke Coordination Conference call: participants are GACC Met, CARB, burners, and air districts. Call held at 1300 LT throughout the year, as necessary. These have proven to be an excellent forum to discuss ongoing burns, new burns planned, air quality issues, marginal burn days, fuel loadings, etc. When burn location and/or meteorology make it feasible, the PS GACC mets can advocate for our burners in Marginal burn day situations. Technical Assistance (WIMS and NFDRS help, RAWS siting visits, other field meteorology assistance, climatology, and other miscellaneous)

29 daily Smoke Transport /
A click on our home page will bring you to this forecast Just click on ‘Daily Smoke Forecast’ in the Smoke Monitoring subsection. an example of our daily Smoke Transport / Stability forecast

30 To the left is a new look for this product, that we are experi- menting with lately. Tom Rolinski and Basil Newmerzhycky are the leads on it.

31 Daily Smoke Coordination conference all:
Redding and Riverside Predictive Services co-host a Conference call at 1300 local time. Dial: Passcode: These calls are held daily from spring burning season through the fall burning season, and as needed in winter. Participants include CARB, the Air districts, burners, and GACC meteorologists from the 2 Predictive Services Units. These have proven to be an excellent forum to discuss ongoing burns, new burns planned, air quality issues, marginal burn days, fuel loadings, etc.

32 Here’s what we try hard to help our burners avoid, as they work to accomplish the prescribed burning.

33 Site-Specific (Spot) Weather Forecasts
·  Have the detail the General forecast lacks  ·  Can be tailored to the most critical time periods ·  Include the effects of topography: -   Local winds, and windshifts -  Inversions, and time of dissipation - Slope and aspect considerations

34 To obtain a Spot forecast, an on-site weather observation
is mandatory! Observations should be both: Representative of the site Timely

35 Relative Humidity Rule of Thumb:
For every 20ºF increase in air temperature, the RH decreases by about half TEMP DEW PT RH 50º F 100% 70º 50º 50% 90º 25%

36

37 This frame shows the top half of the Spot Request form

38 And here is the rest of the form

39 SPOT FORECAST EXAMPLE REDDING INTERAGENCY FIRE WEATHER OFFICE
0830 PST Wednesday Nov. 28, 2007 Spot Forecast for North Coble burn, Hat Creek RD, Lassen NF T34N R5E Secs 1,2 and T35N R5E Secs 34,35 Elev ’ Flat to North aspects ac Fuel: Brush, timber, and slash Procter Creek drainage Based on weather from Ladder Butte RAWS ending 0718 PST today. 24-hr max/min info: Temps 39/ RH 95/35/73% Winds mainly NE 5-9 gusts mph overnight, but latest ob has NW 6 though peak gust south 14 mph *** NOTE - All forecast winds are 20-ft level (per your request) unless noted otherwise *** Discussion: High pressure aloft will strengthen today, with NE to east gradient winds in the morning, giving way to predominantly SE breezes this afternoon. Another cool but likely dry low pressure trough will swing from NW to SE across northern CA in two phases from late tomorrow into Saturday morning. SW to West gradient winds could increase some on ridges tonight. High pressure rebuilds some on late Sat. into Sunday, before a more moist and mild Pacific trough moves into northwest CA by late Monday. At this time, it looks like about an 80% chance of rain from that system, but with light totals - probably .10” or less. Today: Mostly sunny with CWR 0%. Max temps 42-47, with minimum RH 24-32% this afternoon. Wind primarily NE to SE 2-6 gusts 9-11 mph this morning, becoming mainly SE to South 3-7 gusts mph in the afternoon. Mixing height will barely reach 1000’ AGL, with transport winds NE or East 5-8 mph this morning, becoming SE to SSW 7-11 mph in the afternoon. Tonight: ……….. Thursday: ……….. Outlook for Friday through Sunday: …………..

40 Upon request, we do Spots for long-term WFUs
Upon request, we do Spots for long-term WFUs. This was Kingsley, MNF in ’06.

41

42 around your PSA are showing. These weather obs can come from a variety
The ROMAN program is an excellent way to keep track of what the observations around your PSA are showing. These weather obs can come from a variety of agencies. From the National Forests, they are nearly all RAWS stations.

43 ROMAN can also provide you a 5-Day Table of Max/Min Temps, RH, or Winds. The example below
is the Relative Humidity in CA’s far southern mountains, over the final 5 days of March 2008.

44 You can find this product on the
Predictive Services ‘Fuels/ Fire Danger’ page, right hand side Statewide, on Monday afternoon, 3/31/8 Southern CA in Feb ‘07

45 Online product coming soon –
This is not online yet, but regression equation work to finalize it will be done soon. Russ Gripp and Tom Rolinski, working with CEFA/DRI, are Predictive Svcs product developers for it.

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47 CEFA has made several formatting improvements in the past 6 months….
This menu used to be oriented vertically Added a time non- mets can read 4-km products now extend through 72 hours

48

49 NEW

50 NEW – Tahoe Basin area map
NEW – Tahoe Basin area map hr Forecast of Mixing Heights, Valid 1300 PDT 4/1/08 Ft AGL

51 CANSAC Transport Winds Valid 1300 PDT 4/1/08
mph

52 33-hour forecast of Transport Winds, SW Quadrant…
33-hour forecast of Transport Winds, SW Quadrant…. Valid for 1pm on 2/13/08

53 Specialty map centered on Yosemite, Mixing Heights, 1pm Wed. Feb. 13

54 National Weather Service’s Western Region

55 PRODUCTS AND SERVICES provided by the NWS in 2008:
ECCDAs (ECC Dispatch Area forecasts), found on a new CA NWS FW Web page. ECCDA parts are drawn from the Fire Weather Forecasts (FWFs), which can be found on the same web page NFDRS trend forecasts for fire season all wildfire Spot forecasts (and NWS can provide prescribed burn spots also) Red Flag program (Watches and Warnings) some Training (especially S-290 classes) provide IMET service at incidents

56 Red Flag Program has three stages: FIRE WEATHER WATCH RED FLAG WARNING
CANCELLATION

57 RED FLAG conditions are a combination of dry fuels and usually either:
Dry lightning (or any significant lightning event coming just after extended hot/dry weather) OR Windy, low-humidity weather (For areas west of the Cascade/Sierras these are frequently North to East Winds, while for the eastside areas, they tend to be Southwest or West winds).

58 NWS Fire Weather Forecast Zones (FWFs)
                                                                           NWS Fire Weather Forecast Zones (FWFs)

59 From the NWS: Emergency Command Center Dispatch Area forecasts: ECCDAs
These forecasts are put together by the National Weather Service, one per ECC dispatch area (based onDPAs). The input for ECCDAs comes from NWS Fire Weather Forecast Zones (FWFs). Remember, FWFs and ECCDAs are ‘General’ forecasts. This means they will be broad-brushed, and suitable for planning purposes, but not to be taken as a site-specific forecast. This is what our ECCs now use to provide the a.m. and p.m. radio broadcasts to our field fire personnel Forecasts are accessed through the NWS Calif Fire Wx webpage GACCs (Redding and Riverside) no longer issue daily text forecasts

60 This page is found at

61 ECCDA areas for north half of state

62 ECCDA areas for south half of state

63 Past cool season weather
and the 2008 Fire Season

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66 Mountain Snowpack (% of normal) - as of Mar. 1, 2008

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68

69 The end any Questions?


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