The UV Index adopted by the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Weather Service is available online. It's displayed as a map of the United States in bands of vibrant red, purple, magenta, yellow, blue and green - each color depicting the noon level of ultraviolet radiation.Predictions are updated daily. Visit www.epa.gov/sunwise/uvindex.html.
By inserting a ZIP code or a city name and clicking on "search," the predicted UV level for that locale on a given day appears.
Predicted UV levels can be obtained for the three succeeding days by clicking on Day 2, Day 3 or Day 4.
The range of ultraviolet radiation runs from 0 to 11-plus - the higher the number, the more UV radiation and more damage to those who expose their skin to the sun.
Southwest Colorado usually falls into the 8 to 10 category - very high.
Cloud cover Friday placed the Durango area in the 3 to 4 moderate range on the map, but the forecast for today was back up to 10.
Only Australia and southern Argentina and Chile see more ultraviolet radiation.
A hole in the protective ozone layer above the Earth that was discovered over Antarctica has spread to Australia and New Zealand, according to scientists. In fact, anywhere south of 30 degrees latitude probably is exposed to a diminished ozone hole part of the year.