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B.C. weather patterns could hold hazy air conditions for several days, meteorologist says

Click to play video: 'Air quality advisory now issued for eastern Fraser Valley'
Air quality advisory now issued for eastern Fraser Valley
It's out of the ordinary to hear about an air quality advisory this time of the year -- but the wildfires in the province are creating difficult breathing conditions for some people. As Grace Ke reports -- that advisory has now been issued for the eastern Fraser Valley – Oct 5, 2022

The Metro Vancouver Regional District has issued an air quality advisory for the Eastern Fraser Valley due to “high concentrations of fine particulate matter.”

The district said air quality in the region has been severely impacted due to smoke from ongoing wildfires near Chilliwack and Hope and in Washington state.

“A massive high-pressure ridge, with very little circulation and a temperature inversion associated, remains over southern B.C.,” said Global News meteorologist Mark Madryga.

“This ridge will hold for several more days, into Sunday, meaning the hazy conditions due to wildfire smoke will persist in the Lower Mainland and parts of the southwest Interior.

“There are indications that a strong cold front will create gusty winds and showers on Monday through early Tuesday in these areas, which should help disperse at least some of the smoke.”

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Read more: Wildfire in Coquitlam’s Minnekhada Regional Park now ‘being held’

The communities most affected are Agassiz, Chilliwack and Hope, according to Metro Vancouver.

“Wildfire smoke, high humidity, and low winds are contributing to elevated concentrations of fine particulate matter and hazy conditions in other parts of Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, although concentrations are below advisory thresholds,” Metro Vancouver staff said in the advisory.

“The wildfire burning in Minnekhada Regional Park in Coquitlam is now being held, but may contribute to these hazy conditions.”

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Fine particulate matter can “easily penetrate indoors” because of its small size, according to the district.

Those who have underlying health conditions or who may be experiencing trouble breathing are encouraged to find indoor spaces with HEPA air filtration or air-conditioned spaces for relief.

IQAir, a website that ranks air quality and pollution daily, currently has ranked Vancouver as the 23rd-worst air quality in the world.

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