Canadian wildfires are affecting the air quality in Pennsylvania and creating potentially unhealthy pollution levels for people across the state, officials said.
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection issued a Code Orange air quality alert for Tuesday because of wildfires in northern and western Canada — as well as light winds — that are likely contributing to “fine particulate matter” in the air. The alert is in effect in the following areas:
- The southeastern counties of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia;
- The Lehigh Valley-Berks Area which includes the counties of Berks, Lehigh, and Northampton;
- The southcentral counties of Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon, and York; and
- The southwestern counties of Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington, and Westmoreland
A Code Orange alert means sensitive groups — such as people with asthma, heart disease or lung disease — may be exposed to unhealthy levels of pollution in the air, according to the National Weather Service.
The effects of air pollution can be avoided by staying away from strenuous outdoor activity Tuesday, forecasters said.
The DEP is also asking Pennsylvanians to avoid burning firewood, leaves or trash; as well as the use of gas-powered lawn and garden equipment, or a wood stove.
Tuesday will otherwise be a sunny day with highs in the upper 80s, according to the NWS.
Wednesday has a chance of showers in the morning, followed by a chance of thunderstorms after 11 a.m., forecasters said. It is expected to be partly sunny with highs in the upper 80s.
Forecasters said Thursday will be sunny with highs in the low 80s.
Friday has a chance of showers after 2 p.m., with mostly sunshine and highs in the low 80s.
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