Environment Canada has issued a special air quality statement today for the Southern third of B.C. including the North and South Thompson regions.
The Kamloops air quality index hit 10+ today and is forecasted to stay the same for tomorrow before dropping to nine Monday night, and eight on Tuesday.
The heavy smoke from wildfires affecting the Western United States that has blanketed much of the province this past weekend, is expected to stick around for the next 24 to 72 hours with an updated bulletin coming tomorrow, Sept 15.
The heavy smoke has arrived at the same time that the fire danger in Sun Peaks, and much of the southern interior, has risen to ‘high’.
Common symptoms from wildfire smoke inhalation include mild irritation and discomfort which usually dissipate when the smoke clears. Other symptoms include dry cough, sore throat, or difficulty breathing.
To reduce your smoke exposure, Environment Canada suggests you try to stay indoors where smoke levels are lower, but still elevated. They also suggest if you have a forced air heating/cooling system in your home, it may help to change the filter and set the fan to run constantly.
For more information on the current air quality health index and measurements visit: http://www.env.gov.bc.ca/epd/bcairquality/data/aqhi-table.html
For more information on wildfires and your health, visit: https://www.healthlinkbc.ca/health-feature/wildfires