GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Smelling smoke? The fires aren’t burning in West Michigan but Kansas.
The same storm system that brought damaging winds to West Michigan and severe weather across the Midwest and upper Mississippi Valley region helped spread wildfires across parts of Kansas Wednesday.
Kansas was under a Red Flag Warning from the National Weather Service, indicating the strong winds and dry conditions would lead to extreme fire danger.
The strong winds from the southwest are responsible for carrying the smoke across a handful of states and hundreds of miles. As winds continued to surge northeast across the country, the smoke from the wildfires was efficiently transported.
NWS in Chicago tweeted early Thursday that they could smell the smoke. Just a few hours later, the smell of smoke was apparent in West Michigan and it started to look a bit hazy outside.
The winds will shift direction later today and help clear the air from smoke. The Air Quality Index for portions of West Michigan is currently categorized as “moderate,” meaning sensitive individuals may be irritated by the pollutants in the air.