NOUS41 KWBC 281951

PNSWSH

 

Service Change Notice 14-13

National Weather Service Headquarters Washington DC

250 PM EST Fri Feb 28 2014

 

To:       Subscribers:

          -Family of Services

          -NOAA Weather Wire Service

          -Emergency Managers Weather Information Network

          -NOAAPORT

          Other NWS Partners and NWS Employees

 

From:     Eli Jacks

          Chief, Fire and Public Weather Services Branch

 

Subject:  Changes in Several Fire Weather Forecast Zone

          Boundaries for Oregon and Washington Effective

          April 1, 2014.

 

Effective Tuesday, April 1, 2014, at 500 AM Pacific Daylight

Time, 1200 Coordinated Universal Time (UTC), the NWS Weather

Forecast Office in Pendleton (WFO PDT) Oregon and Boise Idaho

(WFO BOI) will reconfigure several fire weather forecast zones in

Oregon and Washington to better capture climatological weather

patterns. Upon implementation of this change, all fire weather

forecasts and related products for the changed zones will use the

Universal Geographic Code (UGC) zone number, name and geographic

description shown below.

 

Table 1: WFO Pendleton OR Fire Weather Forecast Zone Changes in

Oregon and Washington

 

Old Zone UGC      New Zone UGC    New Zone Name

Number            Number

------------      ------------    -------------

ORZ609            ORZ639          Eastern Slopes of the North

                                  Oregon Cascades

 

This zone is being modified to move its current eastern boundary

so that the entire town of Maupin is now within the zone. The

boundary with zone 641 will now be east of Maupin and then follow

the Deschutes River south to the zones 640 and 610 intersections.

 

WAZ609            WAZ639          East Slopes of the Southern

                                  Washington Cascades

 

This zone is being modified to pull its eastern boundary east

from Highway 97 to approximately latitude -120.38.

 

ORZ610            ORZ610          East Slopes of the Central

                                  Oregon Cascades

 

The northeast boundary of this zone is being modified to follow

the Deschutes River from the zones northeast corner south until

Lake Billy Chinook.

 

ORZ630            ORZ640          Central Mountains of Oregon

 

The zone’s northwest boundary is being modified to follow the

Deschutes River from the northwest corner of the zone south to

Lake Billy Chinook. The eastern boundary of this zone is being

modified in several places. Along the extreme northern portion of

the eastern boundary, the boundary has been moved west to no

longer include any of the Western Forested Fire Danger Rating

Area (FDRA). The central portion of the eastern boundary has been

moved east of Mitchell, and will also now include more of the

forested lands on the northeast edge of the Ochoco National

Forest. A small area of the southern portion of the eastern

boundary has been moved west so that is follows more closely with

the southwest border of the Southern Blues FDRA.

 

ORZ631            ORZ641          Lower Columbia Basin of Oregon

 

The western boundary of this zone has been modified to no longer

include any portion of the town of Maupin, and then to follow the

Deschutes River south of Maupin to the southwest corner of the

zone. The southeast corner of this zone will no longer include

the forested area on the Western Forested FDRA. The northeast

corner of this zone will also no longer include the Western

Forested FDRA.

 

WAZ631            WAZ641          Lower Columbia Basin of

                                  Washington

 

The southwestern boundary of this zone has been pulled east from

Highway 97 to approximately latitude -120.38. Another western

portion of this zone has been pulled west from the Benton County,

Franklin County and Walla Walla County junction near the Tri-

Cities so that Kennewick is now within this zone and the western

boundary no longer borders Walla Walla County. The extreme

eastern portion of this zone that originally wrapped around the

northern Blue Mountains will no longer include Asotin County, but

will have a boundary at the Garfield County and Asotin County

border. The southeastern boundary of this zone has been modified

westward to better align with the Northern Blues FDRA boundary.

 

ORZ633            ORZ643          Northern Blue Mountains of

                                  Oregon

 

This zone is now much smaller in size. The zone will no longer

include any portion of the Central Blues FDRA or Baker County,

and will now only include a small northern portion of the Grande

Ronde Valley. The southern boundary will run along a small

western portion of E Birch Creek Road, cut southeast to Highway

244, along Highway 244 north to US 84, then east along US 84 to

just north of La Grande, and the it will turn north to follow the

eastern boundary of the Blue Mountains eastward across the

northern Grande Ronde Valley north of Summerville, but south of

Elgin. The eastern boundary has been modified to better follow

FDRA boundaries near the Wallowa/Union county border. The

northwest boundary with zone OR631 has been pushed west to

include more of the Blue Mountain foothills.

 

ORZ634/ORZ635     ORZ645          Wallowa District

 

This zone’s southern and western boundaries have been expanded to

include all of the Eagle Cap Wilderness and the surrounding

forested areas, including those which extend into Union and Baker

counties. The eastern border remains the OR/ID state line and the

northern border remains the WA/OR state line.

 

N/A               WAZ645          Asotin County  

 

This new zone will include the lowlands of Asotin County. It is

bordered on the northwest by the Asotin/Garfield county line and

the northeast by the Asotin/Whitman county line along the Snake

River. The eastern border is the WA/ID state line and the

southern border is the WA/OR state line. The western boundary is

along the east side of the Northern Blue Mountains.

 

ORZ632            ORZ644          Central Blue Mountains

 

This zone will include the southern and western portions of the

Western Forested FDRA and the northern portion of the Central

Blue Mountains, including the Elkhorn Mountains, as well as the

Grande Ronde Valley. The northern boundary will run just north of

the Umatilla National Forest, eastward to E Birch Creek Road, cut

southeast to Highway 244, along this highway north to US 84, then

east along US 84 to just north of La Grande, and then it will

turn north to follow the eastern boundary of the Blue Mountains

eastward across the northern Grande Ronde Valley north of

Summerville, but south of Elgin. The eastern boundary will run

along the east side of the Grande Ronde Valley, west along the

Union/Baker county line, then south, west of the Baker Valley and

east of the Elkhorn Mountains. The southern boundary will run

from just south of the Elkhorn Mountains, west along Highway 26,

but then north of the John Day Valley. The southwest corner will

include a western portion of the John Day Valley, but will remain

north of the Ochoco Mountains. The western boundary will cut

through the middle of Wheeler County following FDRA boundaries.

 

ORZ632            ORZ642          Southern Blue and Strawberry

                                  Mountains

 

This zone will include the Southern Blue Mountains and therefore

portions of the Umatilla, Malheur and Wallowa-Whitman National

Forests, as well as the John Day Valley. The northern boundary

will be just north of the John Day Valley. The eastern boundary

will run south along the western edge of the forests and then

along the Malheur/Grant county line, and then the Malheur/Harney

county line. The southern boundary is Highway 20, and the western

boundary follows close to the Harney county line and then north

close to the Grant/Crook county line.

 

WAZ675            WAZ675          Eastern Washington Southern

                                  Columbia Basin

 

This zone is being modified to no longer include Kennewick, WA. 

A portion of the southwest border has also been modified so that

it now follows more closely along the Mabton-Bickleton Highway.

 

WAZ681            WAZ681          Yakima Alpine District

 

The southeast corner of this zone has been modified to include

slightly more of the forested area west of Bickleton, WA.

 

Table 2: WFO Boise ID Fire Weather Forecast Zone Changes in

Oregon

 

Old Zone UGC      New Zone UGC    New Zone Name

Number            Number

------------      ------------    -------------

IDZ637            IDZ637          Vale BLM

 

This zone is being modified slightly to bring the northern

boundary back to the Malheur/Baker county line. The remainder of

the zone remains unchanged. No RAWS will be affected and the zone

name will remain unchanged. It will remain labeled "Vale BLM."

 

IDZ638            IDZ638          Baker County

 

This zone will include mostly BLM and private lands in Baker

County, but also some small portions of the Wallowa-Whitman

National Forest. The eastern boundary will follow the OR/ID state

line from Brownlee Dam south to the Baker/Malheur county line.

The southern boundary will now be the Baker/Malheur county line

from the Idaho border westward to where it meets the Wallowa

Whitman National Forest (NF) boundary. The western boundary will

then run northward to where Highway 26 hits the Wallowa Whitman

NF boundary, then diagonally eastward to 44 35 55N 117 55 00W,

and then northward up the west side of the Baker Valley to the

Union/Baker county line (this gathers portions of the broken land

that covers the Wallowa Whitman NF). This boundary breaks the

lower valley from the higher terrain to the west. The northern

boundary will then follow the Union/Baker County line eastward to

the Wallowa Whitman NF/Eagle Cap Wilderness boundary. This zone

will remain labeled "Baker Valley."

 

Table 3: WFO PDT Fire Weather Products Affected by this Change:

 

Product Name                  WMO Header          AWIPS ID

------------                  ----------          --------

Fire Weather Planning         FNUS55 KPDT         FWFPDT

 Forecast

Fire Weather Watch/ Red       WWUS85 KPDT         RFWPDT

 Flag Warning

National Fire Danger Rating   FNUS85 KPDT         FWMPDT

 System

 

Table 4: WFO BOI Fire Weather Products Affected by this Change:

 

Product Name                  WMO Header          AWIPS ID

------------                  ----------          --------

Fire Weather Planning         FNUS55 KBOI         FWFBOI

 Forecast

Fire Weather Watch/ Red       WWUS85 KBOI         RFWBOI

 Flag Warning

National Fire Danger Rating   FNUS85 KBOI         FWMBOI

 System

 

An updated fire weather zone map shapefile containing the new

zones is online at:

 

http://www.nws.noaa.gov/geodata/catalog/wsom/html/firezone.htm

 

More information on WFO Pendleton’s new fire weather zones is

online at:

 

www.wrh.noaa.gov/pdt/reference/Firewx_Zone_Alterations_PDT_2014.pdf

 

and WFO Boise’s new fire weather zones is online at:

 

http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/boi/firewx/change20140317.php

 

For more information please contact:

 

Michael Vescio                  Robert Diaz

Meteorologist-in-Charge         Meteorologist-in-Charge

Michael.Vescio@noaa.gov         Robert.Diaz@noaa.gov

NWS WFO Pendleton               NWS WFO Boise

Pendleton, OR 97801             Boise, Id 83705

541-276-7832                    208-334-9060

 

National Service Change Notices are online at:

 

http://www.weather.gov/os/notif.htm

 

$$