Wildfire smoke causes officials to issue health alert

Wildfire smoke

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Environmental Health Department officials have issued a health alert due to the possibility of smoke from the Skunk Fire moving into the Albuquerque area.

The Skunk Fire is burning in eastern Arizona and smoke from it is expected to move into Albuquerque Monday afternoon. Smoke could linger until Tuesday morning, so the health alert will be in effect from Monday at 9 p.m. to Tuesday at 2 p.m.

The Environmental Health Department recommends that all individuals take precautions when outdoors during hazy conditions. People most sensitive to particulate pollution include young children, adults age 65 and over, pregnant women, and those with heart and/or lung disease, asthma or other respiratory illness.

While these conditions persist, the following actions are recommended, especially for individuals sensitive to particulate pollution:

  • Avoid heavy exertion and stay indoors as much as possible.
  • Keep windows and doors closed. If needed for comfort, use air conditioners or heating systems on recycle/recirculation mode. Avoid using swamp coolers that can circulate outdoor air inside.
  • If symptoms occur, (including severe coughing, difficulty breathing, wheezing, chest tightness or pain, palpitations, nausea or unusual fatigue or lightheadedness) contact your health care provider.
  • If conditions are creating a health emergency, call 911 or seek medical attention at the nearest medical facility.
  • During hazy conditions, air quality can be determined from visibility.

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