Measuring Utah's air quality

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 - Utah) Tuesday brought another day of bad air across parts of the Wasatch Front. The Department of Air Quality’s rating for Tuesday is at “moderate,” and it is going to get gradually worse over the next few days.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 - Utah) Tuesday brought another day of bad air across parts of the Wasatch Front. The Department of Air Quality’s rating for Tuesday is at “moderate,” and it is going to get gradually worse over the next few days.

While anyone can see the air quality is not great, but actually measuring it is another story.

Bo Call works for the DAQ and brought ABC4 to their weather station at Hawthorne Elementary, the main monitoring station for the valley.

“Every time you get in your car, you're adding pollution to the atmosphere,” said Call. “Everybody contributes and everybody's affected.”

Tiny particulates of dust, smoke, or even dirt are collected on filters at the station. The filters send information to a lab, which then gives forecasters the information they need to assign a rating from good to hazardous.

It can also give information about the air itself.

“Try and pinpoint where the emissions are coming from, what's actually in the air,” said Call. “Is it wood smoke, diesel, something blowing off the lake?”

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