The weather will be very this week, with some cooling later in the week. Be safe around water.
The Sourdough Fire north of Diablo Lake started on Saturday, July 29. It is currently burning in the Ross Lake National Recreation Area within the North Cascades National Park Service Complex, in very steep terrain. Air quality in the area is very bad in places, see here for local info. If you choose to travel in the area, please do not stop on the highway to take pictures or look at the fire. Do not fly drones in the area, as this will ground the helicopter and air tankers working on the fire. More information can be found here.
Hwy 20 is closed as of 1900 Thursday, August 10 indefinitely due to falling rocks and debris on the road. There may be large amounts of smoke from the fire, particularly in the afternoons as fire activity increases due to weather changes. Please do not call Dispatch to report it, fire crews are working on the fire. No flying of drones in the area due to aircraft working on the fire.
An excessive heat warning has been issued for eastern Whatcom County for Monday, 8/14 at 0500 through 8/15 at 2300, with a heat advisory for western Whatcom County. See here for hot weather safety. A red flag warning has been issued for eastern Whatcom County for Sunday, 8/13 at 1100 through Tuesday, 8/15 at 2200. More info here.
July 24 a drought emergency was declared by WA State Dept of Ecology for Whatcom County.
Whatcom County Fire Marshal has initiated a Stage 1 Burn Ban effective 0800 Friday, June 9. See here for more information.
A subject of note here is the Mt Baker Hwy closure which is affecting a large area of the county. Please visit the Whatcom County Public Works Road Closures and Restrictions page for more information.
Dry and hot weather will continue tonight through Tuesday. Temperatures are expected to be around 2-5 degrees warmer on Monday and Tuesday, the two warmest days this week.
Dry weather with above average temperatures continues Tuesday night through Thursday, though temperatures will start to gradually trend cooler on Wednesday and then more notably Thursday and Friday. There will be a chance for some rain showers late day Friday into the weekend.
For the Strait and Inland Coastal Waters off Whatcom County today the wind will come from the northwest 15-25 knots becoming 5-15 knots in the afternoon. Wind waves 1-3 feet. Moving into the evening, winds will continue from the northwest at 10-20 knots, rising to 15-25 knots after midnight. Wind waves 2-4 feet. Tomorrow winds come from the northwest at 10-20 knots, becoming 5-15 knots in the afternoon. Wind waves 1-3 feet. For a look at real-time coastal weather and tides you can link here to the Cherry Point NOAA Tide Station.
Visit the Whatcom County Health Department's Wildfire Smoke for up-to-date information and air quality.
No activities currently scheduled for CERT.
Washington waters are often cold enough to cause muscles to not work. Even when the outside temperatures are high, water temperatures can be cold enough to overwhelm even the strongest swimmer.
If you plan to be in or near water this summer, follow these recommendations:
Learn to swim, including water safety and survival skills — To enjoy the water safely, learn swim strokes, water safety, survival skills, and becoming comfortable in the water.
Wear a life jacket — Always wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket when boating, tubing, rafting, swimming or other activities in or on lakes, rivers, salt water, or pools without a lifeguard. Life jacket information for children and teens.
Swim where there is a lifeguard — Swim in areas with lifeguards when possible. Wear a life jacket while swimming in unguarded waters or until the guards start their service.
Supervise children in or near water — Always provide close and constant attention to children you are supervising in or near water. Stay within touching distance of young children at all times.
Do not use alcohol or drugs during water activities — Never use alcohol or other impairing drugs during water and boating activities or while supervising children around the water. Alcohol affects balance, coordination, and judgement. Exposure to sun and heat worsen these effects.
Know what to do in an emergency — Learn first aid and CPR. Seconds count—the more quickly lifesaving CPR is started, the better the chances of recovery. Bring a cell phone or know where to find the nearest phone. Dial 911 in an emergency. Learn safe ways to rescue others without putting yourself in danger (reach for them, throw something to them, don’t go into the water after them). If you are in trouble: flip, float, relax (like a starfish).
The Emergency Management Daily Briefing is produced Monday - Friday unless an update is required for an incident or event over a weekend or during holidays.