Smog warning, air quality statement issued for eastern Ontario, western Quebec

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A hazy sky seen in Ottawa on Monday, July 19, 2021. A special air quality statement is in effect for the region because of wildfires burning in northwestern Ontario. (Ian Black/CBC - image credit)
A hazy sky seen in Ottawa on Monday, July 19, 2021. A special air quality statement is in effect for the region because of wildfires burning in northwestern Ontario. (Ian Black/CBC - image credit)

Environment Canada has issued an air quality statement for parts of eastern Ontario and a smog warning for western Quebec because of ongoing forest fires in northwestern Ontario.

The weather agency says elevated particulate matter and hazy conditions are resulting in reduced visibility and poor air quality in parts of eastern Ontario, including the Ottawa area, Kingston and Cornwall.

In western Quebec, a smog warning is in effect for the area around Wakefield and Maniwaki. Smog can affect people with asthma or other respiratory or heart conditions, the agency said. Anyone with these conditions is urged to avoid outdoor physical activity until the smog lifts.

Symptoms from poor air quality can include coughing, throat irritation and shortness of breath.

"Wildfire smoke is a constantly-changing mixture of particles and gases which includes many chemicals that can be harmful to your health," Environment Canada wrote in a statement.

Air quality is expected to improve later in the day Tuesday as a cold front moves across the region.

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