Thursday, 15 November 2001: 8:20 AM
A Fire Weather Forecast Preparation Program
The need for accurate and timely fire weather forecasts in the Intermountain West has become increasingly apparent in light of the record fire season of 2000. These forecasts are crucial to the fire planning and suppression activities carried out by land management agencies. New software recently developed on the AWIPS platform for the Pocatello/Idaho Falls WFO, allows the production of such forecasts --ready for dissemination to other NWS field offices, Interagency dispatch offices, and incident fire weather meteorologists. This software features graphical tools for generation of the fire weather zone forecast, and initialization of specific parameters using NGM MOS numerical guidance and hourly ETA BUFKIT data. In brief, this software allows the operational fire weather forecaster to spend more time concentrating on pivotal forecast decisions and less time on forecast preparation mechanics.