Algoma Public Health

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Wildfire Smoke and Your Health

Wed, May 31, 2023


With active forest fires in North Algoma, Environment Canada has issued a special air quality statement for parts of North Algoma, including Wawa, White River, and Dubreuilville. Smoke plumes from these active fires may result in deteriorated air quality across these areas.


Algoma Public Health (APH) cautions residents that air pollution from wildfire smoke can be harmful to your health and aggravate heart or lung conditions.


Common symptoms of smoke exposure include sore and watery eyes, runny nose, scratchy throat, mild coughing, or headache. People at higher risk may have more serious symptoms, like shortness of breath, severe wheezing or coughing, chest pain, or heart palpitations. Anyone with these severe symptoms should seek prompt medical care.


Those most at risk are:

  • Children
  • Elderly
  • Pregnant women
  • Anyone with a heart or lung condition
  • Anyone doing strenuous exercise or work


Here are some other ways to reduce your risk during possible wildfire smoke exposure:

  • Limit or avoid outdoor activity and strenuous physical activities
  • At home and in vehicles, keep your windows closed and set the ventilation system to recirculate
  • If you have asthma, COPD, or other breathing problems, use your medication as prescribed by your doctor, and seek medical care if needed


Learn more about wildfire smoke, air quality and your health. For air quality health visit www.airhealth.ca and learn how reduce your health risk and your personal contribution to pollution levels.