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  • Air Quality Health Watch for Particulates from Smoke October 2, 2019

    Oct 02, 2019 | Read More News
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    Smoke from San Xavier Co-Op Farm FirePima County, Ariz. - The Pima County Department of Environmental Quality (PDEQ) is issuing an air pollution health watch due to fire smoke and the potential for elevated levels of particulate matter in certain areas of town, particularly west and southwest of Tucson. Although current levels of particulates report in the “Moderate” range on PDEQ’s air quality monitors, the presence of smoke can be highly localized and might not be captured by the monitors. According to sources, bales of hay, outbuildings and barns caught fire on Tuesday near San Xavier Co-Op Farm and the smoke from the fire continues this morning. 
     
    PDEQ encourages at-risk individuals to be cautious and understand that if they can smell smoke, they are breathing smoke. If individuals with heart disease and respiratory sensitivities are near the fires or smell smoke they may want to reduce their level of exposure and exertion and avoid outside exercise to decrease the amount of particulates they breathe into their lungs. Visit PDEQ’s website for more information about protecting yourself from fire smoke. 
     
    Particulate matter is made up of tiny specks of soot, dust, and aerosols that are suspended in the air we breathe. Particulate matter can come from combustion (cars, industry, structural fire, wildfire and fireplace smoke) and dust from disturbed land that becomes airborne with high winds. PDEQ monitors air pollution in our region at 15 air quality monitoring sites. Up-to-the-hour air pollution levels are available online at the PDEQ website PDEQ website
     
    The public can sign up to receive Air Quality Advisories and other Pima County Department of Environmental Quality notices directly via email.