The air quality was dangerously bad in the area last week.
 
According to Fort Air Partnership, Bon Accord and Gibbons got the worst of the British Columbia wildfire smoke. Both communities had Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) readings of 17 on Friday night (Aug.10).
 
"It's very unusual to see a rating that high in our area," said Godfrey Huybregts, communications director with Fort Air Partnership.
 
All of the surrounding communities, including Fort Saskatchewan, Redwater, Elk Island National Park, Bruderheim and Lamont County, found themselves in the high risk category.
 
Several stations also reported particulate matter levels above the provincial guideline. Particulate matter, more commonly known as soot, is less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter and small enough to penetrate deep into the lungs.
 
"Particulate matter does get produced by dust and smoke from fires," added Huybregts.
 
When the AQHI is high, it is recommended that people with respiratory conditions, children and the elderly avoid, reduce or reschedule strenuous outdoor activities. Anyone experiencing coughing or throat irritation should consider reducing activities as well.

 

 08132018AirQuality

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