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Air quality advisory in effect for Lower Mainland

Air quality advisory in effect for Lower Mainland

The District of Metro Vancouver has issued an air quality warning for the region and parts of the Fraser Valley.

According to the Ministry of the Interior, the recent warm and sunny weather has led to increased smog levels, and the advisory is expected to remain in place for a few more days.

“Hot and sunny weather combined with local emissions has led to elevated ground-level ozone levels,” the company said in a public announcement Monday.

The advisory would cover eastern Metro Vancouver and the central and eastern Fraser Valley.

The county says residents should check air quality regularly, monitor their own symptoms, seek clean, cool air when possible and consider postponing outdoor activities, especially “people with lung and heart conditions, diabetes, pregnant people, infants, children and the elderly.”

Metro Vancouver has published a list of other actions you can take to protect your lungs. These include:

  • Take it easy and limit your outdoor movement, because the deeper you breathe, the more air pollution you inhale.
  • Stay in cool, air-conditioned areas, especially in the afternoon when ozone levels are highest.
  • Drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated can help relieve some respiratory symptoms.
  • Continue to treat existing chronic health conditions such as asthma, COPD or other lung diseases, heart disease, and/or diabetes. Use symptom-reducing medications, such as inhalers, as needed. Seek medical attention if symptoms persist.
  • Reduce sources of indoor air pollution, such as smoking and vacuuming.

It says masks worn to protect against COVID-19 offer little protection against gases such as ozone.

The district says the advisory remains in effect until further notice.