Air quality advisories have been issued for Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Sunshine Coast and Sea to Sky Corridor because of wildfire smoke. The advisories are expected to remain in place until weather conditions change.
Over the next 24 hours if you experience any of the following, please seek medical attention:
- Difficulty breathing
People with heart or lung conditions may be more sensitive to the effects of smoke and should watch for any change in symptoms that may be due to smoke exposure.
If any symptoms are noted, affected individuals should take steps to reduce their exposure to smoke and if necessary see their physician.
People with symptoms should go to their health care provider, walk-in clinic or emergency department depending on the severity of symptoms.
Help keep yourself safe by doing the following:
- Use common sense regarding outdoor physical activity – if your breathing becomes difficult or uncomfortable, stop or reduce activity.
- Stay cool and drink plenty of fluids.
- Smoke levels may be lower indoors, however levels of smoke particles will still be increased. If you stay indoors, be aware of your symptoms.
- Consider visiting a location like a shopping mall with cooler filtered air. Keep in mind that many air conditioning systems do not filter the air or improve indoor air quality.
- Reduce indoor pollution sources such as smoking or burning other materials.
- You may be able to reduce your exposure to smoke by moving to cleaner air. Conditions can vary dramatically by area and elevation.
- Residents with asthma or other chronic illness should activate their asthma or personal care plan.
- Pay attention to local air quality report, air quality may be poor even though smoke may not be visible.
- Commercially available high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters can further reduce poor indoor air quality near the device.
- Maintaining good overall health is a good way to prevent health effects resulting from short-term exposure to air pollution.
For general information about smoke and your health, contact HealthLink BC available toll free, 24 hours a day at 8-1-1 or online