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Metro Vancouver issues air quality advisory for sixth day in a row

Locals are urged to stay indoors.
wilfire-smoke-vancouver
Smoke is causing poor air quality and reducing visibility. Photo: @CDCofBC / Twitter

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for the sixth day in a row for Metro Vancouver due to a number of wildfires burning south of the border.

Metro Vancouver is continuing the fine particulate matter advisory that has been in effect since Sept. 8 for Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley Regional District due to wildfire smoke from outside the region. Wildfire smoke from fires in Washington and Oregon has moved northward into the region and is forecast to impact air quality today.

Special air quality statement in effect for:

  • Metro Vancouver - NE
  • Metro Vancouver - NW
  • Metro Vancouver - SE
  • Metro Vancouver - SW

Smoke levels on Monday are expected to be lower. However, localized smoke concentrations may vary widely across the region as winds and temperatures change, and as wildfire behaviour changes.


Fine particulate matter, also known as PM2.5, refers to airborne solid or liquid droplets with a diameter of 2.5 micrometres (µm) or less. PM2.5 can easily penetrate indoors because of its small size.

Persons with chronic underlying medical conditions or acute infections such as COVID-19 should postpone or reduce outdoor physical activity until the advisory is lifted, especially if breathing feels uncomfortable. Exposure to PM2.5 is particularly a concern for people with underlying conditions such as lung disease, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, and/or diabetes, individuals with respiratory infections such as COVID-19, pregnant women and infants, children, and older adults. Individuals who are socially marginalized may also be at elevated risk.

As we are in the summer season with warm temperatures, the weather department notes that it is also imperative to stay cool and hydrated. Indoor spaces with HEPA air cleaner filtration and air conditioning may offer relief from both heat and air pollution, but physical distancing guidelines for COVID-19 should still be observed.

 

If you are experiencing symptoms such as chest discomfort, shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing, seek prompt medical attention. Call 9-1-1 in the case of an emergency.

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