Shift in weather could push wildfire smoke from Lower Mainland back into B.C. Interior

The smoke that has blanketed most of Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley since Sunday morning could soon be gone.

An air quality advisory remains in place for the region, but Environment Canada meteorologist Alyssa Charbonneau said the smoke could be pushed out as early as Tuesday.

“Today, particularly by the water, it’s not too bad,” Charbonneau told CTV News Monday.

“In the Lower Mainland, we are expecting a shift in the weather pattern tomorrow could start to clear this out."

While the haze has diminished air quality in the region, Charbonneau said it’s still far from the conditions in B.C.’s fire zones.

“It’s nowhere near what they’re seeing in the Interior," she said.

With around 240 wildfires currently burning across the province, the smoke is presenting more challenges for suppression crews. The shift in the weather, which will push the smoke back towards the Interior, is expected to make an already difficult situation even worse.

"Unfortunately this grounds our aircraft in many areas,” said Jean Strong of the B.C. Wildfire Service.

“This is harmful for not only suppression activities but also getting in the air."

Some cooler temperatures and rain are in the forecast, however there’s also the potential for some more extreme weather.

“We do have risk of thunderstorms across much of B.C.,” Charbonneau said.

As of Monday evening, more than 25,000 properties are either under an evacuation order or alert.