SOUTH FORK, COLO., (August 6, 2015) — This release corrects the website address and provides recognition to the Governor’s Office of Information Technology.
 
A temporary Doppler Radar unit will again monitor weather activity over the West Fork Complex Fire burn scar from Lobo Overlook on Wolf Creek Pass during August and September.
 
This PX1000 Doppler Radar unit comes from Oklahoma University’s Advanced Radar Research Center located in Norman, Oklahoma.  Project partners include RWEACT-WIn, the USDA Forest Service, and the Office of Emergency Management (San Luis Valley and Southwest Regions).  The height of the mountains surrounding the burn scar areas results in an inability for the existing National Weather Service (NWS) radar to capture the late summer weather.   Low-lying, monsoonal cloud formations can create prolonged rainstorms.  Over severely burned areas, this weather can create extreme events, putting lives and property at risk.  Although the Fire occurred in 2013, the risk of flooding or mudslides can remain for many years until the burned soils have stabilized.
 
By providing real time data of pending weather activities in or near the burn scar to the NWS and local emergency managers, response time by trained weather spotters and emergency responders is improved. The radar’s data will be available at: http://arrc.ou.edu/px1000/status/index.html (please note this is a corrected website from the previous release).
 
CORRECTION:  RWEACT-Win also recognizes the Governor’s Office of Information Technology, Public Safety Communications Network, for supporting this project by allowing the project to be located on the Public Safety Communications Site and supplying the power for its operation.
 
ADDITION:  Please note that during that during pleasant weather conditions the radar will not be operating. OU and the NWS will monitor the weather conditions that will warrant the activation of the radar.
 
RWEACT-WIn (Rio Grande Watershed Emergency Action Coordination Team – Watershed Initiative) -- together with the Rio Grande National Forest and funded through the Colorado Water Conservation Board, the Department of Local Affairs, and the Office of Emergency Management – works to promote partnerships and actions that provide for public safety and resiliency of communities and watersheds of the Rio Grande Basin in Colorado. More information can be found at www.rweact.org