Air quality reaches hazardous levels in Spokane

Air quality reaches hazardous levels in Spokane

Kerry Wise
August 21, 2018

The smoke from wildfires across northern parts of Washington state and southern British Columbia has lowered visibility to between one and three miles in some areas and is leading to dangerously unhealthy air quality across the region. "This means that everyone should stay indoors, avoid all strenuous activity, close windows & doors".

The largest fire continues to be the 850-square-kilometre blaze moving north from Fraser Lake toward Fort St. James and officials say an increase in wildfire activity in southeastern also a concern.

When the sky isn't totally black, the smoke turns it an eerie orange shade, according to Earther.

The air quality issues have forced many closures and cancellations in Spokane.

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"A mask is only going to clear smoke for you if it's fitted correctly".

The agency forecasts its air-quality index, which measures levels of the most harmful particulate matter in the air, to reach 151 in the Seattle area on Monday, well into the unhealthy category by federal standards.

About 2,200 evacuees have ended up in Prince George, where some people said they were sleeping in their vehicles until other shelter could be found. Smoke from fires in British Columbia drifting into Washington and Idaho will cause unhealthy air levels through Tuesday, the weather service said.

The alert is the result of smoke from Canadian wildfires drifting across the region.