ME DEP issues Air Quality Concerns for June 30 – July 7, 2018

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For Immediate Release

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Maine DEP Issues Air Quality Concerns for June 30 - July 7, 2018

AUGUSTA, June 29, 2018

A significant heat event has been building and will be impacting the northeast for the next 7 to 8 days. At the same time, conditions will allow precursors to form ozone very efficiently in the region. The airmass will not move out of the region until sometime next weekend. Maine will not escape some effects of this episode. Currently, Maine DEP Air Quality Meteorologists do not expect that ozone will be unhealthy every day. In fact, Saturday’s forecast is for Moderate levels of ozone along the coast from Kittery through Acadia NP and the Western Interior region while Sunday is expected to be Good.

However, even moderate levels of ozone combined with moderate levels of particle pollution in addition to heat and humidity will compound the effects of each. Therefore, individuals should evaluate their health and possible sensitivities and prepare for this event to reduce the likelihood and/or severity of health impacts. It is important to remember that people living in northern climates are less acclimated to heat and therefore can be impacted at lower temperatures. Everyone is encouraged to check the Air Quality Forecast daily during this prolonged episode.

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:

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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For additional information, contact:

David Madore, Communications Director

(207) 287-5842

david.madore

or

Martha Webster, Meteorologist

(207) 287-8093

martha.e.webster

or

Tom Downs, Chief Meteorologist

(207) 287-7026

tom.downs

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