Air Quality Alert Issued for Central & Southern Minnesota
The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has issued an Air Quality Alert for a large portion of central and southern Minnesota in effect from noon Tuesday through 8:00 pm Tuesday night.
Southerly winds are transporting wildfire smoke into the state. Sunny skies, warm temperatures, and low humidity will allow these pollutants to react in the air to produce ground-level ozone. Ozone will be highest during the afternoon and early evening hours when sunshine is most abundant, and temperatures are highest.
Ground-level ozone is expected to be high during the afternoon hours on Tuesday, and air quality is expected to reach the orange (unhealthy for sensitive groups) AQI category across Minnesota.
Orange Air Quality Level = Unhealthy for sensitive groups
Sights and smells: In areas where air quality is in the orange AQI category due to wildfires, the sky may look hazy and residents may smell smoke even when wildfires are far away.
Health effects: This air is unhealthy for sensitive groups and pollution may aggravate heart and lung disease as well as cardiovascular and respiratory conditions. Symptoms may include chest pain, shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing, and fatigue.
What to do: People in sensitive groups are encouraged to reduce outdoor physical activities, take more breaks, or do less intense activities to reduce their exposure. People with asthma should follow their asthma action plan and keep their rescue inhaler nearby.
You can visit the Minnesota Pollution Control; Agency's Air Quality Index webpage for more information on current air quality conditions.