Air quality advisory issued for Courtenay

Courtenay’s second air quality advisory in a month has been issued by the Ministry of Environment.

According to a Dec. 7 news release, the air quality advisory was issued due to high concentrations of fine particulates that are expected to persist until weather conditions change.

In the last 24 hours, fine particulates averaged 26 micrograms per cubic metre — just over the provincial air quality objective of 25 micrograms per cubic metre, according to the news release.

The ministry suggests avoiding roads with heavy vehicle traffic and areas with wood smoke until the advisory is lifted.

Open burning restrictions are also in effect within 15 kilometres of Courtenay City Hall.

“No new fires may be initiated and no additional material may be added to existing fires,” reads the release.

Poor air quality most strongly affects those with medical conditions such as asthma, chronic respiratory diseases, and heart disease. The Ministry of Environment recommends that people with such issues stay indoors, keep windows and doors closed and to reduce indoor sources of pollutions, such as smoking, vacuuming and the use of wood stoves.

Courtenay’s last air quality advisory was issued on Nov. 7 and lasted for two days.

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