Hazy sun

PHOENIX (3TV/CBS5) -- The plume of smoke from the wildfires in California began to pour into northwestern Arizona Monday afternoon and slowly moved into the Valley overnight. "This morning we all woke up to that red sun as it was rising," said Dr. Matt Pace, Meteorologist for ADEQ.

Although the images of a red sun were a bit eerie, the smoke that caused it stayed elevated, which actually helped the Valley's air quality.

"So while you do see the haze of the ground level, for the most part, all the monitors in the valley are in the good to lower moderate category," said Pace.

But folks that live up north in areas like Prescott, Flagstaff and the Grand Canyon need to be aware of a possible side effect of the smoke. "We are seeing some impacts where they're generally sitting in the upper moderate category, so certainly remember, if you are smelling smoke, that means you're breathing smoke," said Pace.

The smoke isn't impacting our ozone levels as much as the last time.

"So, last time, we actually saw unhealthy levels of ozone. But this time, since we are seeing more wind in the valley, we're expecting all that accumulated ozone to quickly move off towards the south. So ozone is not going to be a concern with this particular smoke event," said Pace.

How long the smoke haze will last depend on two things - how long the fires stay active and what happens with our weather pattern.

"Right now we are looking at this system, sitting over the four corners. And that is a typical location where we could see quite a bit of smoke continue to wrap around the backside of that low into Arizona. And then high pressure starts to build in Friday, Saturday Sunday, and that can start to trap some of that smoke directly over the state," said Pace.


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3TV/CBS 5 Weekend Weather Anchor

Ashlee DeMartino is part of the Arizona Weather Authority team and works every day to bring you accurate forecasts. Read more about Ashlee.

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