Hazardous air quality levels expected in New Mexico as wildfire smoke fills the air
Air quality could remain dangerous through at least Wednesday
It’s going to be a tough go for people in New Mexico and elsewhere in the Southwest, as smoke from wildfires is helping to send the air quality to unhealthy and even hazardous levels.
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Most of New Mexico will remain under moderate air quality levels on Tuesday, which means the air quality is acceptable for most people. Still, some people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution may be at risk.
However, areas around Santa Fe and Alamogordo have been placed into very unhealthy to hazardous categories.
THE AIR QUALITY INDEX EXPLAINED
And because of the hazardous air quality conditions, Air Quality Alerts have been issued by the New Mexico Departments of Health and Environment for Grant and Sierra counties, including the communities of Silver City, Lake Roberts, Kingston, Fort Bayard, Hillsboro, Winston, Truth or Consequences, Derry and Spaceport.
Those alerts are in effect until 1 p.m. local time on Tuesday.
The areas seeing very unhealthy and hazardous air quality levels on Tuesday will see the same conditions on Wednesday, as there will likely be no relief from the smoke in the air from wildfires burning in the region.
However, parts of North Texas, like the Lubbock area, will begin to see their air quality levels become unhealthy as smoke drifts into that region as well.
SIGNS THAT POOR AIR QUALITY COULD BE AFFECTING YOUR PET
As you can see from the FOX Weather Smoke Tracker, thick smoke will be present from southern and central New Mexico into North Texas and the Texas Panhandle, as well as West Texas in the Fort Stockton area.
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Light to moderate smoke can be expected to fill the air elsewhere in East Texas, Louisiana and the Mississippi and Tennessee valleys.
When the air quality becomes very unhealthy or hazardous, most people will be affected.
The National Weather Service suggests that people should remain indoors if possible when the air quality is unhealthy. Especially for people with respiratory concerns or other health problems. And if you do need to go outside, try to limit the time you're out in the elements and try to minimize the use of items that could cause pollution, like cars, gas-powered lawnmowers and other vehicles.