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Monday, August 31, 2015

DEQ extends Air Quality Forecast and Caution for North Central Idaho

Due to wildfire smoke throughout the region, the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is extending an Air Quality Forecast and Caution to notify residents of Idaho, Nez Perce, Lewis, Clearwater and Latah Counties (off the Nez Perce Reservation) of degraded air quality.  Air quality is currently in the MODERATE category and is forecast to remain in the MODERATE to UNHEALTHY FOR SENSITIVE GROUPS category for Idaho County and southern Clearwater County.  The other counties have seen some improvement and are forecasted to be in the  Good to Moderate category. Conditions may deteriorate rapidly and move into the Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups to Unhealthy categories at times based on fire activity and winds. The pollutant of concern is Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5). An update will be provided on September 1, 2015 at 10:00am.
Health Impacts and Recommended Actions
When air quality is unhealthy, everyone may begin to experience health effects. Members of sensitive groups* may experience more serious effects & should avoid prolonged/heavy exertion & stay indoors. Everyone else should limit prolonged/heavy exertion & limit time outdoors.
Outdoor Burning Restrictions
All outdoor open burning is prohibited by the Department of Environmental Quality Rules for the Control of Air Pollution in Idaho (IDAPA 58.01.01.550).
Contact
For more information, contact DEQ’s Regional Office in Lewiston at (208) 799-4370.
For real-time air monitoring information, visit DEQ’s website at airquality.deq.idaho.gov.
For more information about wildfire smoke, visit Idaho’s Smoke Blog at idsmoke.blogspot.com.