Spokane air quality reaches "hazardous" conditions

The grey areas of this map show areas under a special air quality statement from Environment Canada

The grey areas of this map show areas under a special air quality statement from Environment Canada

"These acute effects where the air quality gets worse from wildfire smoke for a few days-they probably do not have long-lasting effects in most of us".

Thick smoke blanketing British Columbia communities far from any flames - including Vancouver where the haze Monday obscured the city's mountain views - could be particularly harmful for children and seniors but anyone with poor health should take precautions, says a senior scientist.

Air quality advisories were in effect for portions of Washington and OR, according to the weather service. To help you stay informed about air quality during the fire season, KQED Science is providing this map showing air quality in your area and what it means for your health, updated hourly. Hazy conditions will continue through Wednesday before air quality improves Thursday.

For those wanting a break from the smoke, Saxton said indoor spaces with air conditioning tend to have the cleanest air. As seen on the images below, the index for Vancouver has unhealthy levels in nearly all areas.

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency has issued an air quality alert for parts of Minnesota including a portion of south-central Minnesota from 11 a.m. Monday until 9 a.m. Tuesday.

There are now over 400 active wildfires in the province, emanating smoke that NASA says can be seen from satellites 1.5 million kilometres away.

There will be "no significant smoke clearing expected before Wednesday for most of the state".

The Montana Department of Environmental Quality issued an air quality alert for 19 western Montana counties.

But Yosemite National Park's website warned of poor air quality and visibility at times due to the Ferguson Fire.

The fires burning near the Nadina, Shovel and Tesla lakes in the Bulkley-Nechako region remain the largest in the province at more than 1,600 square kilometres combined.

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