Multiple wildfires have been burning across the province for a couple of weeks and today (Tuesday, May 16) Environment Canada issued a special air quality for Strathmore and surrounding areas. Wildfire smoke from Northern and Central Alberta continues to move into western and southern Alberta, causing poor air quality and reduced visibility.
Individuals may experience symptoms such as increased coughing, throat irritation, headaches or shortness of breath. This could be an even bigger problem if you have underlying health conditions or may be more at risk.
"People with lung disease (such as asthma) or heart disease, older adults, children, pregnant people, and people who work outdoors are at higher risk of experiencing health effects caused by wildfire smoke. Speak with your health care provider about developing a management plan for wildfire smoke events and maintaining a supply of necessary medications at home and always carrying these medications with you during wildfire season," the Environment Canada statement read.
The statement also advised those with HVAE in their homes to use the highest-rated MERV filter while setting the fan to recirculate air constantly or use a portable High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) air cleaner.
In addition, it is recommended to keep doors and windows closed if the temperature in your home is comfortable. Take a break from the smoke at a location in your community where you can find clean, cool air.
If you or those in your care are exposed to wildfire smoke, consider taking extra precautions to reduce your exposure. Wildfire smoke is a constantly-changing mixture of particles and gases which includes many chemicals that can harm your health. For more details, please consult www.canada.ca/en/environment-climate-change/services/air-quality-health-index/wildfire-smoke.html.
For more information please visit Alberta Health Services at www.albertahealthservices.ca
The Air Quality Health Risk ( AGHI) was showing for the Calgary area at +10 which indicates a very high risk for those with heart and lung conditions and those who are most affected by air pollution. Air quality conditions are expected to improve on Wednesday.
Send your news tips, story ideas, pictures, and videos to firstname.lastname@example.org