Friday, August 19, 2011

Air Time: Wildfire smoke sparks air quality alert

By Seth Preston, Communications Manager, Air Quality Program

Health officials have issued an air quality alert because of smoke from the Tumwater Canyon fire in north-central Washington.

Air quality in the area is now in the "unhealthy for sensitive groups" category under the Washington Air Quality Advisory (WAQA), according to the Chelan-Douglas Health District.

When air quality reaches "unhealthy for sensitive groups" status, outdoor activities should be limited for people with lung and heart disease, diabetes, or a respiratory infection; those who have had a stroke; infants and children; and adults older than 65.

You can read more about WAQA categories here.

The Tumwater Canyon fire, now encompassing about 200 acres, is burning in steep, rugged terrain about six miles north of Leavenworth in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest.

To track information on the fire, check here for fire updates. You also can see images from a web camera in Leavenworth via the Wenatchee World's website.

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