Wildfire smoke prompts another special air quality statement
Yet another special air quality advisory has been issued for the Grande Prairie – Beaverlodge – Valleyview and Peace River – Fairview – High Prairie – Manning regions. Environment Canada says wildfire smoke is causing poor air quality and reducing visibility at times.
“The poor air quality is the result of elevated values of fine particulate matter. Very high AQHI values are being reported through much of Alberta and are expected to remain high through mid week.”
As of 9 p.m. Monday, the Peace Airshed Zone Association rates the Air Quality Health Index in both Grande Prairie and Beaverlodge as 4 or moderate.
Environment Canada warns the smoke could lead to symptoms like increased coughing, throat irritation, headaches or shortness of breath. Children, seniors, and those with cardiovascular or lung disease, such as asthma, are especially at risk.
“People with lung diseases, such as asthma and COPD, can be particularly sensitive to air pollution. They will generally experience more serious health effects at lower levels. Pollution can aggravate their diseases, leading to increased medication use, doctor and emergency room visits, and hospital visits.”
The smoke is largely coming from the more than 300 wildfires burning in British Columbia as well as others in the United States.