Program for Climate, Ecosystem and Fire Applications

National RAWS Quality Control and Data Estimation
for Fire Program Analysis

Access Data Here

Southern California Northern California Southern Northwest Western Great Basin Eastern Southwest Eastern Great Basin Nothern Rockies Rocky Mountain

The above plot shows the locations of all weather stations that were submitted to be processed for FPA. Blue or cyan stations have already been processed. Red stations have not been processed for reasons explained in FAQ 3 (below). Click on a region to zoom.



Frequently Asked Questions about the FPA RAWS data

1. How do I access the most recent QC'd set of RAWS data?

To download the lastest versions of QC'd and estimated RAWS data, the Western Regional Climate Center (WRCC) has developed an FPA RAWS data request web site. This web site will allow you to request data in a variety of formats (e.g., flagged, fwx, fw9). The data request will be processed, then posted to an FTP site for you to download. With each request, you will also receive a file listing the metadata for each site in your request and a file listing the percentage of each variable's data in each file that had to be estimated.

2. Why can't I import the downloaded FPA RAWS data into PCHA and/or FireFamily Plus?

Because the naming convention of these files are made up on the 4-character station ID (instead of the old 6-digit NWS id) and the word 'unvalidated' along with the version number, old versions of these software may not accept these file. Please DO NOT rename these file, for they tell you important information about the fact that they are still being updated and which version you have. To be able to import these files into the software, PCHA version 1.2.31 Patch 11f or later and FireFamily Plus version 3.0.5 or later is required. 

3. Why do the filenames have the word 'unvalidated' in them?

The word 'unvalidated' has been placed into the data files' filenames to remind users that the estimated data within the files have yet to be analyzed statistically to determine the level of estimation value confidence.   Estimated data validation is currently taking place, and when final data are available, the word 'unvalidated' will be removed from the filenames.

4. How do we know which values were the original observations and which were estimated?

This is very important to understand when working with these data.   Nowhere in the *.fwx or *.fw9 files does it indicate which values were the original observations and which were estimated values.   Therefore, great caution and awareness is needed when working solely with these files.   In the *.dat files, however, the end columns containing flag values indicate this desired information.   A '1' means the value was the original observation and a '2' means the value was estimated.   There is a flag value for each variable, excluding state of the weather.   ALL state of the weather values were estimated.

5. Why were some of my stations not processed?

Only stations that had hourly RAWS data archived at the Western Regional Climate Center (WRCC) prior to 2004 were processed.   All manual stations and non-RAWS have yet to be processed.   If there is a station that was not processed, but you believe there are RAWS data prior to 2004, please contact me (see below).

6. Will these data files ever be updated?

Yes.   There are several phases of processing and validation planned for this FPA RAWS project.   A new release of data will take place whenever possible. It is anticipated that notification of data changes will be distributed, but also feel free to check this web site occasionally for updates.


Contact Information:

Beth Hall
Assistant Research Scientist
Division of Atmosperic Science
Desert Research Institute
2215 Raggio Pkwy
Reno, NV 89512
(775) 674-7174