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Precautionary Air Quality Advisory issued for Alberta Health Services’ North Zone

May 5, 2016

NORTH ZONE – Due to wildfires burning in areas across the North Zone Alberta Health Services (AHS) is issuing a precautionary air quality advisory for communities in the North Zone.

Individuals living or travelling in the above noted area are advised to be aware of potential health concerns that can be associated with current air conditions.

Although the current air conditions do not typically cause health concerns in most healthy individuals, if these conditions become more severe, even healthy individuals may experience temporary irritation of eyes and throat, and possibly shortness of breath.

Individuals with respiratory conditions (such as COPD and asthma), and individuals with existing cardiovascular conditions (such as angina, previous heart attack and congestive heart failure), may notice a worsening of symptoms, due to the current air conditions. These individuals should monitor for worsening of symptoms and take the precautions routinely recommended by their physicians if a worsening of symptoms occurs.

To reduce exposure to the smoky air conditions, individuals with pre-existing conditions can also:

  • Minimize physical activity outdoors in the impacted area.
  • Remain indoors with windows, doors and air circulation fans/vents closed.

Individuals experiencing symptoms can also call Health Link at 811 to speak to a registered nurse.

Air quality can vary with weather conditions and prevailing winds. Because air quality is expected to be variable, this advisory will remain in effect until further notice.

Information about the air quality in many areas of Alberta is updated regularly on the Alberta Environment and Parks Website at: www.airquality.alberta.ca. Air quality information is also available by phone, toll-free, at 1-877-247-7333.

For information about the wildfire situation in Fort McMurray and other North Zone communities visit: www.ahs.ca/wildfire.

Alberta Health Services is the provincial health authority responsible for planning and delivering health supports and services for more than 4 million adults and children living in Alberta. Its mission is to provide a patient-focused, quality health system that is accessible and sustainable for all Albertans.

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For media inquiries, contact:

Kirsten Goruk
AHS Communications
780-830-3537