CARB releases Spanish version of California Smoke Spotter app
For immediate release
SACRAMENTO – The California Smoke Spotter mobile app will now provide fire mapping and smoke updates in Spanish, making it available to 10.4 million Californians in their primary language.
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) launched the mobile app in 2021 to make information about smoke from wildfires and prescribed fires easily accessible to help Californians take health precautions, such as limiting outdoor activities and using air filters. The mobile app will now feature an option to view the information in Spanish.
“In recent years, some of the worst wildfire smoke impacts have been in areas with a large share of Spanish-speaking communities, and the latest update to California Smoke Spotter makes critical health information available to Californians who speak Spanish as their primary language,” said CARB Chair Liane Randolph. “At CARB, we are committed to equity and inclusion, and this latest service is an example of the ways that we are working to ensure that people have the resources and information they need during wildfire season.”
Key features of California Smoke Spotter, now available in English or Spanish, include:
- 72-hour smoke forecast
- Personalized alerts for multiple locations
- Current Air Quality Index (AQI) data
- Latest information on wildfires and prescribed fires
- Health section shows users how to protect themselves from smoke
According to the latest U.S. Census data, 10.4 million Californians – or 28% of the state’s entire population – speak Spanish in their home.
In certain conditions, smoke can travel long distances, affecting people hundreds of miles from the fire that produced it. Wildfire smoke can contain a range of harmful air pollutants, from known toxins to tiny particles that can aggravate existing health problems and increase the risk of heart attack, stroke and asthma symptoms. Smoke can be especially dangerous for sensitive groups including children, the elderly, pregnant people, and people with existing heart or respiratory conditions.
CARB launched California Smoke Spotter in 2021 as part of its efforts to help the state balance air quality protection with fire protection and land management goals. The app was first created to support prescribed fire efforts in California and was expanded to include information on wildfires last year. Key features of prior releases, including prescribed fire details and a separate smoke forecast, are still available within the app as a resource for Californians outside wildfire season.