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Forest fires prompt precautionary air quality advisory

Due to increased smoke and particulate matter from forest fires in northern Alberta, Alberta Health Services issued a precautionary air quality advisory.
Individuals living or travelling in the Lethbridge area are advised to be aware of air conditions and take precautions against potential health concerns that can be associated with current conditions.
Although the current air conditions do not typically cause health concerns in most healthy individuals, if these conditions become more severe, even healthy individuals may experience temporary irritation of eyes and throat, and possibly shortness of breath.
To reduce exposure to the current air conditions, all individuals can:
• Minimize physical activity outdoors.
• Remain indoors with windows, doors and air circulation fans and vents closed
• If you drive to another location, keep windows and vents closed. Run your car fan on re-circulate mode to avoid drawing in outdoor air.
People with respiratory conditions such as COPD and asthma and individuals with existing cardiovascular conditions such as angina, previous heart attack and congestive heart failure, may notice a worsening of symptoms, due to the current air conditions. These people should monitor for worsening of symptoms and take the precautions routinely recommended by their physicians if a worsening of symptoms occurs.
People experiencing symptoms can also call Health Link Alberta 24 hours a day, seven days a week, toll-free at 1-866-408-5465 to speak to a registered nurse.
Air quality can and will vary with weather conditions and prevailing winds. Because air quality is expected to be variable, this advisory will remain in effect until further notice.
Information about the air quality in many areas of Alberta is updated hourly on the Alberta Environment Air Quality Website: Air quality information is also available by phone, toll-free, at 1-877-247-7333.

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