Temperatures are expected to hit the 90s Monday, but winds should shift Tuesday, bringing cooler air and blowing out some of the haze from wildfires.
The Seattle area is expected to cool off in the coming days, as ocean wind strengthens and ushers out a heat wave that brought 90-degree-plus temperatures and hazy skies to Western Washington, meteorologists say.
The smoky skies have hung around the region mostly because of raging wildfires in California, said Jeff Michalski, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
The air quality in the Seattle area is currently moderate to good, but paired with high temperatures on Monday, Michalski said people with respiratory conditions should take precautions.
Monitoring stations are reporting normal or slightly above-normal levels of air pollutants, which is why some areas of Seattle are labeled as having moderate air quality.
Because the particles of air pollutants from smoke are so small, they can enter the lungs and bloodstream, which can cause respiratory and heart problems. The Puget Sound Clean Air Agency recommends people sensitive to smoke, such as children, pregnant women and those with respiratory or heart conditions, take it easy on physical activity outside Monday.
The Washington state Department of Ecology has a list of tips for reducing smoke exposure, including closing windows, doors and vents and making sure air and vacuum cleaners have a HEPA filter.
Seattle residents may remember apocalyptic skies taken over by smoke from wildfires in British Columbia last summer, but Michalski said that as of now, conditions aren’t forecast to be as extreme. In Central Washington, the Chelan Hills fire has burned 1,842 acres, but is mostly contained and isn’t contributing significant smoke to the Puget Sound region, he said.
Temperatures are expected to cool down and return to the 70s by Wednesday, which Michalski said is normal for this time of year.
“This is the last day of our warm spell,” Michalski said.
Sunday was the eighth day in a row that temperatures were above 85, National Weather Service meteorologist Johnny Burg said.
A heat advisory hasn’t been issued in Western Washington, but with high temperatures, some are taking precautions. Seattle Public Library branches without air conditioning may briefly close if temperatures get too hot.