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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — U.S. Geological Survey scientists will deploy to the active South Fork and Salt fires today to increase water data transmission from streamgages within the burn area. 

At the request of the National Weather Service, the USGS team will modify four streamgages to transmit data every 15 minutes instead of hourly. This increased frequency will help improve monitoring of potential debris flows and flooding if rainfall occurs later this week.  

USGS Scientists Deploy to New Mexico Fire to Enhance Water Monitoring

Andrew Mangham, National Weather Service senior service hydrologist says,

"During rainfall events on burn scars, situational awareness is of utmost importance for the protection of recovery crews as well as the public. Every minute matters when it comes to issuing life-saving warnings. More rapid data transmission from USGS precipitation and streamflow gauges is a critical tool in the National Weather Service's toolbox." 

Post-fire flooding can occur rapidly and poses significant risks to public safety and infrastructure. The increased data transmission will aid in quicker detection and response to potential hazards. 
The newly formed USGS Water and Fire Technicians Team consists of water data specialists who have obtained the necessary training and qualifications of a wildland firefighter. This specialized training allows them to safely operate in active fire zones. 

Repairing a streamgage during the Blue 2 Fire near Alto, New Mexico

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