CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Smoke from the western wildfires was visible early Wednesday morning in areas of western Massachusetts, and may return Thursday afternoon.
A bit of smoke in the sky Wednesday morning has already cleared. But, Thursday morning, and especially the afternoon, smoke may be visible in western Massachusetts again.
The smoke is a result of record-shattering wildfires out west. The smoke is picked up by the jet stream and brought to the Eastern region, including western Massachusetts. Even though the smoke is around here locally, it’s not affecting our air quality since it’s not closer to the ground.
An online, interactive smoke map launched by the EPA and the U.S. Forest Service last year on a pilot basis has drawn millions of viewers. To reach people more quickly, officials are considering using mobile phone push notifications that would alert users when heavy smoke could inundate their communities, according to agency spokeswoman Enesta Jones.
A heat advisory for western Massachusetts will be in effect until 8 p.m. on Wednesday; this heat advisory has been issued because the heat indices will be between 95 to 99 degrees.
Hotter and more humid weather is expected on Thursday, for which an excessive heat watch for eastern Franklin, Hampshire and Hampden counties has been issued. This will be in effect from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday. The difference between this and the heat advisory is how high the heat index will get. The heat index will be upwards of 105 degrees, meaning that Thursday will be dangerously hot outside.