August 11, 2018 5:52 pm

Calgary experiences early morning high-risk air quality advisory

Calgary's air quality hit max levels early Saturday morning, presenting a high health risk.

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Between 4 a.m. and 10 a.m. Saturday, Calgary saw Air Quality Health Index values hitting 9 and 10 on the scale — presenting the highest possible health risk.

Fires burning in B.C. for the last three weeks have really “ramped up,” causing poor air quality and reducing visibility, said Alysa Pederson, a meteorologist with Environment Canada.

“What we saw this morning is as severe as it can get,” she said.


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The air quality decreased as more smoke blew in from northern Alberta and settled into the ground early Saturday morning.

The smoke dissipated as the day went on, but there is still a risk of it resurfacing into Saturday night, Pederson said.

For the rest of the weekend, the maximum Air Quality Health Index is predicted to fluctuate between 4 and 6 and presents a moderate health risk.

Pederson said Calgary is more likely in the clear after Sunday, with the low pressure system moving the smoke towards Saskatchewan.

Environment Canada said rain showers will help improve conditions on Saturday and Sunday.

READ MORE: Friday marks hottest day ever recorded in Calgary

Every person will react differently to breathing in smoke, Pederson said.

It’s about managing the risks that come with these advisories and monitoring how you’re feeling.

With pets, watch for shortness of breath, and if possible, bring them somewhere air-conditioned or less smoky.

Keep up to date on current weather conditions and alerts with Environment Canada.

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