Smoke Forces Yosemite's Closure

Hazardous air expected for several days
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 18, 2020 8:46 AM CDT
Smoke Forces Yosemite's Closure
Smoke from the Creek Fire fills the air over a boating dock in Shaver Lake, Calif., on Sept. 6.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Yosemite National Park has been closed indefinitely as smoke from wildfires turns the air into a polluted mess. An air quality monitor run by the federal government showed a pollution score of 681 in the park on Thursday, per the Los Angeles Times. Hazardous air is anything scoring above 300. The National Park Service, which closed the park at 5pm, said air quality in the "unhealthy to hazardous range" was expected over the next several days. (It is at 306 as of this writing.) Two lightning fires are burning inside the park, while the 244,756-acre Creek Fire is burning in the Sierra Nevadas to the south. It was 18% contained on Thursday, per NBC News. Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks are also closed, along with California's 18 national forests. (More Yosemite National Park stories.)

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