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000
NOUS41 KWBC 042002
PNSWSH

Service Change Notice 15-12
National Weather Service Headquarters Washington DC
303 PM EST Wed Mar 4 2015

TO:       Subscribers:
          -Family of Services
          -NOAA Weather Wire Service
          -Emergency Managers Weather Information Network
          -NOAAPORT
          Other NWS partners and NWS employees

FROM:     Eli Jacks
          Chief, Fire and Public Weather Services Branch

SUBJECT:  Changes to the boundaries of some Grand Junction, UT,
          Weather Forecast Office Fire Weather Forecast Zones,
          Effective April 7, 2015

Effective Tuesday, April 7, 2015, at 1200 Coordinated Universal
Time (UTC), the NWS Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in Grand
Junction, CO (GJT), will split its Grand Junction Forecast Area
(COZ203) into two new fire weather forecast zones and its Durango
Forecast Area (COZ207) into three new fire weather forecast
zones. These changes will improve services for WFO GJT fire
weather partners by better associating zone areas with weather
regimes and terrain.

The split of the Grand Junction Forecast Area (COZ203) will
create new fire weather forecast zones for the mountains and
valleys of central Colorado (COZ205) and the mountains and
valleys of west-central Colorado (COZ203).

The split of the Durango Forecast Area (COZ207) will create new
fire weather forecast zones for the lower elevations of southwest
Colorado in Montezuma, southern La Plata, western Dolores and San
Miguel, and southwest Montrose Counties (COZ207); the mountainous
and foothill terrain in eastern Dolores and northeast Montezuma
Counties (COZ294); and the mountainous and lower elevation
terrain in northern La Plata, San Juan, southern Hinsdale, and
Archuleta Counties (COZ295).

In addition, the western portion of San Miguel County and the
extreme southwest portion of Montrose County will move from
COZ290 (Paradox Valley) into two of the new fire weather forecast
zones of the Durango Forecast Area in southwest Colorado.
Specifically, the southwestern portion of current fire weather
forecast zone COZ290 will be moved into new fire weather forecast
zones COZ207 (the area below about 7000 feet elevation) and
COZ294 (the area above about 7000 feet elevation).

Once these changes have been implemented, the fire weather
forecast zone numbers, names and geographical descriptors in
Table 1 and Table 2 will be used in all fire weather forecast
products issued by WFO GJT.

Table 1: New/Old Zone Numbers/Names

New Fire       New Fire         Old Fire        Old Fire
Weather Zone   Weather Zone     Weather Zone    Weather Zone
Number         Name             Number          Name
-------------  -------------    -------------   -------------
COZ203         Lower Colorado   COZ203          Grand Junction
                River                            Forecast Area

COZ205         Colorado River   COZ203          Grand Junction
                Headwaters                       Forecast Area

COZ207         Southwest        COZ207          Durango
                Colorado Lower                   Forecast Area
                Forecast Area

COZ294         Southwest        COZ207          Durango
                Colorado Upper                   Forecast Area
                West Forecast
                Area

COZ295         Southwest        COZ207          Durango
                Colorado Upper                   Forecast Area
                East Forecast
                Area

Table 2: New Geographic descriptions

COZ203         Lower Colorado River
Physical Description:  This zone consists of that portion of Mesa
and Garfield counties west of New Castle, CO, except the area
encompassing the Grand Mesa.

COZ205         Colorado River Headwaters
Physical Description:  This zone consists of that portion of
Garfield, Eagle, and Pitkin Counties east of New Castle, CO, plus
the portion of the Grand Mesa within eastern Mesa County.

COZ207         Southwest Colorado Lower Forecast Area
Physical Description:  This zone is defined as the lower
elevations, generally areas below 7000 feet elevation, of
southwest Colorado in Montezuma, southern La Plata, western
Dolores, San Miguel, and southwest Montrose Counties.

COZ294         Southwest Colorado Upper West Forecast Area
Physical Description:  This zone consists of the mountainous and
foothill terrain, generally above 7000 feet elevations, in
eastern Dolores and northeast Montezuma Counties.

COZ295         Southwest Colorado Upper East Forecast Area
Physical Description:  This zone is defined as the mountainous
and lower elevation terrain in northern La Plata, San Juan,
southern Hinsdale, and Archuleta Counties.

Graphical depictions of the old and new fire weather forecast
zones are online at:

    http://www.crh.noaa.gov/images/gjt/fire/OldGJTFWZones.png

and

    http://www.crh.noaa.gov/images/gjt/fire/NewGJTFWZones.png

NWS watch, warning and forecast products affected by these
changes are:

PRODUCT                    WMO HEADING    AWIPS ID
------------------------   -----------    -------
Fire Weather Watch         WWUS85 KGJT    RFWGJT

Red Flag Warning           WWUS85 KGJT    RFWGJT

Fire Weather Planning      FNUS55 KGJT    FWFGJT
 Forecast

National Fire Danger       FNUS85 KGJT    FWMGJT
 Rating System Forecast

NWS partners and users will need to make necessary changes to
their communication systems to accommodate these fire weather
forecast zone changes.

A shapefile of the new fire weather forecast zones for WFO GJT is
online at:

    www.nws.noaa.gov/geodata/catalog/wsom/html/firezone.htm

For more information, please contact:

    Jim Pringle
    Warning Coordination Meteorologist
    NWS Grand Junction, CO 81506-6844
    Phone: 970-243-7007
    Email: james.pringle@noaa.gov

National Service Change Notices are online at:

    http://www.weather.gov/os/notif.htm

$$


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