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HomeNewsAir Quality Index Moved To High Risk For Kawartha Lakes, Haliburton And...

Air Quality Index Moved To High Risk For Kawartha Lakes, Haliburton And Northumberland

KAWARTHA LAKES-The Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP)Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) has now moved our area to high risk due to smoke from ongoing forest fires.

“The current smoke plumes from forest fires throughout Ontario and Quebec are leading to worsening air quality, moving the air quality health index to high risk,” said Dr. Natalie Bocking, Medical Officer of Health, and Chief Executive Officer for the HKPR District Health Unit. “For those who may be at risk due to other health reasons we are advising you to please prioritize your health by reducing your exposure.”

Public health officials refer to the MECP’s Air Quality Health Index (AQHI), which uses data from 39 air monitoring stations that collect real-time air pollution data and report on key pollutants that are indicators of overall outdoor air quality. The AQHI hourly values and daily forecasts are calculated and produced by ECCC and posted hourly, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The AQHI table below shows the health risk associated with the air pollution we breathe presented on a scale of 1 to 10+ with four health risk categories. Each category also provides direction on health measures for ‘at risk’ individuals and the general population.

Officials say by taking these precautions, you can help protect your health and minimize the risks associated with wildfire smoke events.

Health Measures for the General Population
Reduce or reschedule strenuous activities outdoors, especially if you experience symptoms such as coughing and throat irritation.

Health Measures for the At Risk Population
Individuals with lung disease (such as asthma) or heart disease, older adults, children, pregnant women, and those who work outdoors are at higher risk of experiencing health effects caused by wildfire smoke.

  • Reduce or reschedule strenuous activities outdoors. Children and the elderly should also take it easy.
  • Improve your air quality by changing your furnace filters.
  • Find out if you are at risk


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Pamela Vanmeer
Pamela Vanmeerhttps://www.kawartha411.ca/
Pamela VanMeer is a two time winner of the prestigious Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) Award. Her investigative reports on abuse in Long Term Care Homes garnered international attention for the issue and won the Ron Laidlaw Award. She is a former reporter and anchor at CHEX News, now Global Peterborough and helped launch the New CHEX Daily, a daily half hour talk show. While at CHCH News in Hamilton she covered some of the biggest news stories of the day.

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