Air Quality Alert

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Maine Department of Environmental Protection

For Immediate Release

Contact: David Madore, Communications Director, david.madore@maine.gov or (207) 287-5842

(AUGUSTA) -- Ground-level ozone concentrations will be climbing in Maine on Monday, August 17, 2015 and are expected to reach unhealthy levels according to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). This air quality event is occurring due to air emissions being transported from States located to our southeast. Unhealthy levels of ozone are expected to continue for Tuesday and possibly into Wednesday.

  • On Monday the unhealthy levels of ozone will be confined to the Southwest Coastal Region of Maine with Moderate levels of ozone expected for the Western Interior, Mid-Coast, High Elevations of Acadia NP and the Downeast Coast.
  • Early indications for Tuesday are that ozone levels would be unhealthy for the Southwest Coast, Mid-Coast and the High Elevations of Acadia NP with Moderate levels of ozone in the Western Interior, Eastern Interior and the Downeast Coast.
  • Meanwhile, Particle pollution levels will reach the moderate range for the southwest corner of Maine on Monday and likely extend statewide on Tuesday.
  • Please check DEP’s Air Quality Forecast page http://www.maine.gov/dep/air/ozone/ for Wednesday’s updated forecast after 3 PM Tuesday.

At elevated ozone levels, children, healthy adults who exert themselves, and individuals suffering from a respiratory disease such as asthma, bronchitis or COPD can experience reduced lung function and irritation. When this happens, individuals may notice a shortness of breath, coughing, throat irritation, and/or experience an uncomfortable sensation in their chest.

Some actions you can take to protect your health during periods of unhealthy air quality include:

In addition to those in a sensitive group, sports coaches, elder care workers, nurses and others who are responsible for the welfare of people impacted by poor air quality are urged to use one of the listed tools to follow the Air Quality Forecast:

DEP's toll free air quality hotline is 1-800-223-1196 For more information call the contacts listed above, visit DEP’s air quality web site http://www.maine.gov/dep/air/ozone/ or contact Andrew Johnson, Division of Air Quality Assessment, Maine DEP at (207) 287-7047 or via email at andy.johnson@maine.gov.

-end-

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