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Rain in forecast could help with smoke: Air Quality Meteorologist

Wildfire smoke continues to impact northern BC as a special air quality statement remains in effect.

The smokey skies bulletin stays in place mainly due to fires overseas in Siberia but also from local fires throughout the province.

Air Quality Meteorologist Earle Plain says the heat is doing anything but help.

“Because of the heat that we’ve had in this unprecedented, long spell of heat that we’ve got, it’s definitely trapping things in valley bottoms and creating conditions where we’ve got local fires as well that are contributing to the problem.”

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The upcoming forecast shows rain everyday starting August 1. Plain says that could help with the smoke.

“I think that the change in the weather is definitely going to help things, it’s really going to depend on local fires in the area and the circulation around those fires and how it draws that smoke, or those plumes of smoke, into neighbouring areas.

“In terms of just the underlying haze that we see across the province right now, generally when this trough comes through the area we should see some winds associated with that and some precipitation and it should be really good news for clearing the smoke out of the area.”

People with cardiovascular or lung disease, children, and seniors are especially at-risk during this advisory. Symptoms may be seen such as increased coughing, throat irritation, headaches, or shortness of breath. It is recommended to stay inside a cool and ventilated place if you have breathing difficulties. An air conditioner that cools and filters air may help.

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