An Air Quality Advisory has continued for Golden and the southern half of BC, as heavy smoke from the wildfires in the United States continues to impact the region.
The bulletin was first issued on Monday, Sept. 14 and is expected to be in effect until Thursday, Sept. 17.
Smoky conditions are expected to be variable but persist until the end of the week, according to Environment Canada and the B.C. Ministry of Environment.
Wildfire smoke is a constantly-changing mixture of particles and gasses which can include chemicals that can be detrimental to the health and well being of those who breath the particles in.
While smoke can be a natural part of the environment in southern B.C. during this time of year, it is still important to limit exposure. Those with pre-existing conditions, older adults, infants and children, to name a few, are more likely to experience health effects from smoke exposure.
To limit negative effects, stop or reduce your activity level if breathing becomes difficult in smokey conditions, according the Ministry of Environment.
Stay cool and drink plenty of fluids and ensure that those who cannot care for themselves follow the same advice. Those with asthma or other chronic illness are encouraged to carry any rescue or fast acting medications at all time.
Smoke inhalation can still occur indoors, so continue to monitor your symptoms even when indoors.
Exposure to wildfire smoke and the virus that causes COVID-19 can both result in respiratory symptoms such as a dry cough, sore throat, or difficulty breathing. Use the BC COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool to help determine whether you need further assessment or testing for COVID-19.
If you are unsure whether you need medical care, call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1.
If you are experiencing difficulty in breathing, chest pain or discomfort, or a severe cough, contact your health care provider, walk-in clinic, or emergency department. If you are having a medical emergency, call 9-1-1.
More information on smoke inhalation and updates to the advisory can be found on the Government of B.C.’s website.