Record fires blamed for haze over West Michigan

Haze over Michigan on July 5, 2015 as seen from space.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD/AP)—While fireworks filled the sky over much of West Michigan this past Fourth of July weekend, that’s not the reason for a haze that’s settled over the area.

Storm Team 8 meteorologist Matt Kirkwood says forest fires in Canada are to blame for smoke tinging Michigan’s normally blue skies.

>>Storm Team 8 Forecast 

The Associated Press reports thousands of residents have been evacuated because of fires in the western Canadian province of Saskatchewan. The flames have consumed about 741,000 acres in the province- around 10 times larger than average.

Officials say 1,136 people evacuated from La Ronge, Saskatchewan were taken to Cold Lake, Alberta Saturday night.  Thousands of others left on their own.

Nearly 1,000 Canadian military members are on their way to battle the fires.

Satellite images show the smoke lingering over Lake Michigan, stretching from the edge of Wisconsin into Michigan.  The red-orange hue of the sun also signals smoke in the air.

A cold front moving into West Michigan Monday night may wash out some of the smoke in the atmosphere.

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