Air quality alerts issued as smoky skies blanket B.C.’s south coast

Air quality alerts issued as smoky skies blanket B.C.'s south coast
File photo of smoky skies on the South Island.

A smoky skies bulletin is in place for Greater Victoria due to elevated concentrations of fine particulate matter from wildfire smoke.

The risk is forecast to be moderate from noon Friday to at least Sunday.

The West Shore was particularity smoky, with Langford hitting a moderate late Friday morning.

Smoke concentrations may vary widely across Greater Victoria and the B.C. South Coast due to wind, temperature, and wildfire behaviour change.

The fine particulate matter is primarily due to smoke from wildfires burning throughout B.C. and Washington State and it will likely continue in many areas until there’s a change in the weather.

The latest models show smoke blanketing Vancouver Island until a low-pressure system starts to move in on Monday.

READ MORE: Fear, falsehoods and conspiracy theories ignite amid Canada’s wildfires

Air quality alerts were also issued Friday morning for Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley.

Smoky skies bulletins are also in place for Whistler, Howe Sound, Fraser Canyon, the Thompson-Okanagan, much of Northern B.C. and several other areas.

Experts advise postponing or reducing physical activities outdoors when air quality is moderate or high risk.

Anyone with asthma or other lung diseases, underlying health conditions, a respiratory infection, or who may be pregnant should avoid going outdoors altogether.

Infants, children and older adults may also be disproportionately affected and should take precautions.

You should seek immediate medical attention if you’re experiencing chest discomfort, shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing.

For more on air quality in B.C., click on this link.

To sign up for air quality alerts in your area, go to: For more information on current air quality, visit Visit for information on how to reduce your health risk and your personal contribution to pollution levels, as well as for current and forecast AQHI values.

Tess van StraatenTess van Straaten

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