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Air quality advisory issued

Wildfires locally and the BC Interior causing smokey skies in the East Kootenay.

Smoke is causing poor air quality and reducing visibility. Smoke is expected or occurring.

The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, in collaboration with the Interior and Northern Health Authorities, has issued a Smoky Skies Bulletin for North Thompson, South Thompson, Shuswap, 100 Mile, Cariboo (North and South), Chilcotin, Nicola, Okanagan, Similkameen, Fraser Canyon, East Kootenay, and East Columbia due to wildfire smoke.

Smoke concentrations will vary widely as winds, fire behaviour and temperatures change.

Avoid strenuous outdoor activities. If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms, contact your health care provider: difficulty in breathing, chest pain or discomfort, and sudden onset of cough or irritation of airways. Exposure is particularly a concern for infants, the elderly and those who have underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, and lung or heart disease.

This bulletin will remain in effect until further notice.

Individuals may experience symptoms such as 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.

Stay inside if you have breathing difficulties. Find an indoor place that’s cool and ventilated. Using an air conditioner that cools and filters air may help. If you open the windows you may let in more polluted air. If your home isn’t air-conditioned, consider going to a public place (library, shopping mall, recreation centre) that is air-conditioned.

For more information on current air quality, see:

Visit for information on how to reduce your health risk and your personal contribution to pollution levels, as well as for current and forecast AQHI values.

Trevor Crawley

About the Author: Trevor Crawley

Trevor Crawley has been a reporter with the Cranbrook Townsman and Black Press in various roles since 2011.
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