Chimney smoke is a contributor to particulates in the air.

UPDATE: Air quality advisory for Smithers ended

Fine particulate concentrations are high and an advisory went into effect Tuesday for Smithers.

The alert has ended.

The Ministry of Environment in collaboration with Northern Health and the Town of Smithers has issued an Air Quality Advisory for Smithers because of high concentrations of fine particulate matter that are expected to persist throughout the week.

This advisory is in effect until further notice.

Persons with chronic underlying medical conditions should postpone strenuous exercise until the advisory is lifted. Staying indoors and in air conditioned spaces helps to reduce fine particulate exposure. Exposure is particularly a concern for infants, the elderly and those who have diabetes, and lung or heart disease.

Restrictions on open burning are now in effect for the Bulkley Timber Supply Area until Sunday, Dec. 10 at 9:00 a.m.

For the duration of this advisory the use of woostoves is prohibited within the Town of Smithers, unless the woodstove is the only source of heat in a dwelling.

Real-time air quality observations and information regarding the health effects of air pollution can be found at bcairquality.ca.

What is fine particulate matter?

Fine particulate matter, PM2.5, refers to airborne solid or liquid droplets with diameters of 2.5 micrometres (µm) or less. PM2.5 levels tend to be highest around busy roads, industrial operations and neighbourhoods with residential wood burning. PM2.5 can easily penetrate indoors because of their small size.

Sources of PM2.5 contributing to this air quality episode include emissions from wood smoke (woodstoves) as well as emissions from industry and transportation sources such as automobiles, trucks and rail traffic.

Tips to reduce your personal health risk:

• Avoid roads with heavy vehicle traffic and areas with wood smoke.

• Continue to manage medical conditions such as asthma, chronic respiratory disease and

heart failure. If symptoms continue to be bothersome, seek medical attention.

• Use common sense regarding outdoor physical activity; if your breathing becomes difficult

or uncomfortable, stop or reduce the activity.

• Maintaining good overall health is a good way to reduce health risks resulting from shortterm

exposure to air pollution.

For persons with chronic underlying medical conditions:

• Residents with asthma or other chronic illness should activate their asthma or personal

care plan.

• Stay indoors, keep windows and doors closed and reduce indoor sources of pollution such

as smoking, vacuuming and use of wood stoves.

• Run an air cleaner. Some room air cleaners, such as HEPA filters, can help reduce indoor

particulate levels provided they are the right size for your home and filters are changed

regularly.

• Take shelter in air-conditioned buildings which have large indoor volumes and limited entry

of outdoor air.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Coastal GasLink gives $100K to United Way efforts in Northern B.C.

Organization’s COVID-19 Relief Fund benefits seniors in isolation, among others

UPDATE: First presumptive case of COVID-19 in Prince Rupert

Doctor says it was a visitor, Northern Health won’t confirm

Fisheries and Oceans Canada lifts at-sea observer requirements due to COVID-19

Fisheries Management Order went into effect April 2 and will remain for 45 days

Some Smithers businesses may re-open sooner rather than later

Weekly Chamber of Commerce video conference focuses on business concern amid COVID-19

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

COVID-19: 4 new deaths, 25 new cases but only in Vancouver Coastal, Fraser Health

A total of 1,291 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

COVID-19: Don’t get away for Easter weekend, Dr. Bonnie Henry warns

John Horgan, Adrian Dix call 130 faith leaders as holidays approach

COVID-19: Trudeau says 30K ventilators on the way; 3.6M Canadians claim benefits

Canada has seen more than 17,000 cases and at least 345 deaths due to COVID-19

RCMP call on kids to name latest foal recruits

The baby horses names are to start with the letter ‘S’

As Canadians return home amid pandemic, border crossings dip to just 5% of usual traffic

Non-commercial land crossing dipped by 95%, air travel dropped by 96 per cent, according to the CBSA

Logan Boulet Effect: Green Shirt Day calls on Canadians to become organ donors

While social distancing, the day also honours the 16 lives lost in the 2018 Humboldt Broncos Crash

COMMENTARY: Knowing where COVID-19 cases are does not protect you

Dr. Bonnie Henry explains why B.C. withholds community names

B.C. wide burning restrictions come into effect April 16

‘Larger open burns pose an unnecessary risk and could detract from wildfire detection’

Most Read