Jun. 30—Air pollution from wildfires in eastern Canada is expected to reach unhealthy levels for sensitive individuals in Cheshire, Grafton and Sullivan counties and at elevations above 2,000 feet for Saturday and Sunday mornings.
People sensitive to air pollution should take precautions to protect their health by limiting prolonged outdoor exertion, according to the state Department of Environmental Services.
Sensitive individuals include children and older adults; anyone with lung disease such as asthma, emphysema and bronchitis; and people who are active outdoors. Even healthy individuals may experience mild health effects and should consider limiting strenuous or prolonged outdoor activities, DES advises.
Wind patterns are forecasted to transport waves of smoke from extensive wildfires in eastern Canada across much of New England and New Hampshire.
The smoke plumes also diffract light, causing a hazy appearance in the sky and reduced visibility of distant objects.
Air quality is expected to improve on Sunday afternoon when winds are forecasted to direct the smoke away from New Hampshire. Forecasted rain is expected to help wash out particle pollution.
The severity of the health effects increases as fine particle concentrations increase. Symptoms of particle pollution exposure may include chest pain, palpitations, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. People with asthma and other existing lung diseases may not be able to breathe as deeply or vigorously as normal and may experience symptoms, such as coughing and shortness of breath.
For air quality forecasts and current air pollution levels in New Hampshire, call 1-800-935-SMOG or visit the NHDES website at www4.des.state.nh.us/airdata/.