Alberta wildfires: Smoke triggers special air quality statement for most of province IG News

IG news Update,

With dozens of wildfires raging in Alberta, Environment Canada issued a special air quality statement for much of the province Tuesday morning as more smoke began drifting into communities, even some far from the blazes .

“Smoke is causing or is likely to cause poor air quality and reduced visibility,” the weather agency said in an alert issued after 7:30 a.m. The air quality condition is expected to improve on Wednesday.

“Even at low concentrations, wildfire smoke can be harmful to everyone’s health.”

Wildfire smoke billows from Edmonton’s river valley on May 16, 2023.

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Edmonton and Calgary were included in the air quality statement, affecting people mostly in central and northern Alberta.

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Environment Canada warned that people with lung or heart diseases, pregnant women, older adults, children and people working outdoors were at “high risk of experiencing health effects caused by wildfire smoke”.

“Slight burning and discomfort are common, and usually disappear when the smoke clears,” the weather agency said. “Drinking lots of water can help your body cope with the smoke.

“If you have an HVAC system in your home, use the highest rated MVR filter for your system — ideally one rated 13 or higher — and set the fan to circulate air continuously. You can use a portable high-efficiency particulate air filter.” You can also use a (HEPA) air cleaner. If your home is at a comfortable temperature, keep your doors and windows closed.

Click here for more information.

For a complete list of weather warning areas in Alberta, click here.

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