Air Quality Alert in effect for Southeast Michigan on Monday

Southeast Michigan remains under an Air Quality Alert that was issued over the weekend.

Wayne, Washtenaw, Macomb, Oakland, Livingston, St. Clair, and Monroe counties are all under the alert, which is set to expire Tueday morning. 

According to the National Weather Service, the air is expected to be unhealthy for sensitive groups. This means members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is less likely to be affected.

This poor air quality comes as a stretch of 90+ days sets in

"High temperatures outside are sometime linked to elevated levels of pollutants like ozone. It is important for Michiganders to be aware when air quality triggers alerts," said Phil Roos, EGLE director. "People can help protect themselves and reduce pollutants by staying informed of changing air quality conditions. We urge everyone to become familiar with our notification system and pay attention to air quality alerts to protect themselves and their loved ones."

Air quality health tips:

During unhealthy for sensitive groups (AQI orange) to unhealthy for everyone air quality events (AQI red), the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) advises the following:

For people with heart or lung disease, pregnant people, older adults aged 65+, children, and teens it is suggested to take the following steps to reduce exposure:

  • Avoid strenuous outdoor activities.
  • Keep outdoor activities short.
  • Consider moving physical activities indoors or rescheduling them.

For everyone else:

  • Choose less strenuous activities (like walking instead of running) so you don’t breathe as hard. ‘
  • Shorten the amount of time you are active outdoors.
  • Be active outdoors when air quality is better.

During very unhealthy or hazardous for everyone air quality (purple to maroon Air Quality Index levels), MDHHS advises the following for everyone:

  • Stay indoors with the doors and windows closed using MERV-13 or better air filtration.
  • Seek shelter elsewhere if you do not have an air conditioner, and it is too warm to stay inside with the windows closed. Call or text 211 or contact your local health department to find out if there is a shelter or cooling center nearby.
  • Use air filters to improve indoor air quality. Whether you have a central air conditioning system or a portable room unit, use high efficiency filters to capture fine particles from smoke. If you don’t have access to those filter systems, you can create a temporary air purifier with a 2012 or newer box fan and attaching a MERV-13 or higher air filter to it. Information is available online.
  • Keep activity levels low.
  • Avoid outdoor activities.
  • Use N95 style masks if you have to be outside.

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