IDEM issues air quality warnings for today

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management is declaring a statewide Air Quality Action Day alert for today due to the smoke from western wildfires that have moved into Indiana.

IDEM is forecasting high levels of fine particles in the air due to smoke from wildfires in the western United States and southern Canada. Those particles are composed of microscopic dust, soot, and liquid that settles deep into the lungs and cannot be easily exhaled. People already at risk are particularly vulnerable after several days of high exposure. The levels are expected to be in Orange or Unhealthy range for sensitive groups range.

Active children and adults, and people with respiratory disease, such as asthma should limit prolonged outdoor exposure.

IDEM says there are actions you can take to reduce the amount of fine particles in the air. Those include:

  • Reduce activity time outdoors to reduce unhealthy exposure to the fine particles and avoid exercising near busy roads.
  • Avoid burning wood and other unnecessary fires.
  • Avoid using the drive-through and combine errands into one trip.
  • Avoid refueling your vehicle or using gasoline-powered lawn equipment.
  • Turn off your engine when idling for more than 30 seconds.
  • Conserve energy by turning off lights or setting the air conditioner to 75 degrees or above.