Maine DEP Issues Air Quality Alert for Monday, June 12, 2017

Maine Department of Environmental Protection

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Maine DEP Issues Air Quality Alert for Monday, June 12, 2017

June 12, 2017

Contact: Contact: David Madore, Communications Director, david.madore@maine.gov or (207) 287-5842; Martha Webster, martha.e.webster@maine.gov or (207) 287-8093; Tom Downs, tom.downs@maine.gov or (207) 287-7026

(AUGUSTA)-- Ground-level ozone concentrations will be climbing in Maine on Monday and are expected to reach unhealthy levels from Kittery to Acadia according to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). In addition, moderate levels of particle pollution are expected in the same areas.

This is a multiday ozone event that has been building since last Wednesday beginning in Texas. On Thursday elevated levels of ozone occurred in Texas and Missouri then expanded further north and East to Tennessee and the Great Lakes on Friday. On Saturday, elevated levels of ozone exceedances are expected to expand into the metro corridor from Washington DC to Boston with Moderate levels reaching Maine’s southwest coast. Maine will be impacted by this transport event on Monday, June 12, 2017.

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:

  • Adjusting your schedule to avoid strenuous outdoor activity during the afternoon.
  • Please consult the Maine CDC website for information on the health impacts of extreme heat and appropriate actions to take (http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/environmental-health/heat/).
  • The Maine CDC Asthma Prevention and Control Program has asthma information available at their web site: http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/mecdc/population-health/mat/index.htm
  • For more information on asthma control visit EPA's Web site www.epa.gov/asthma to find information about asthma triggers and lessons on asthma management.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 or go to DEP’s air quality web site http://www.maine.gov/dep/air/ozone/ .

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