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Wildfires in Canada create air quality concerns in Wisconsin

Smoke from the wildfires in Canada is bringing fine particle pollutants to the air in...
Smoke from the wildfires in Canada is bringing fine particle pollutants to the air in Wisconsin. Here, the sun is viewed through smoky haze over Lake Wissota in northwestern Wisconsin. (Tom Larson/WEAU Viewer Photo)(Submitted By Viewer)
Published: Jul. 20, 2021 at 2:23 PM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) - Children, older adults and those with cardiac or respiratory issues are urged to limit their time outdoors due to air quality concerns.

The visible haze is due to wildfires in Ontario and Manitoba. The Department of Natural Resources website shows air quality index values have reached an unhealthy level for some groups. Exposure to these suspended particles from the smoke can cause serious health problems.

Children are more likely to be affected because their respiratory systems are still developing. Kids breathe more air per pound of bodyweight than adults.

Experts say paper masks will not help. Particulate masks known as N-95 or P-100 respirators will help, but they must fit well and be used correctly.

The advisory lasts until midnight Wednesday and the entire state. By Thursday morning air quality should be improved statewide.

Tuesday, the Marathon County Health Department noted the air quality in Wausau was ‘moderate’.

This means that if you are unusually sensitive to particle pollution, consider reducing your activity level or shorten the amount of time you are active outdoors.

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