RSS feed for Air quality health alerts Air quality health alerts

Health alerts are issued by DEQ when air pollutant levels are measured or estimated to be unhealthy for sensitive groups.

List administrator(s): Dan Salkovitz, Mike Kiss, Kristen Stumpf, Bobby Lute

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality Will Resume Ozone Air Quality Forecasts via E-mail on Monday, April 3rd

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality Will Resume Ozone Air Quality Forecasts via E-mail on Monday, April 3rd

The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will resume ground-level ozone air quality forecasts in addition to the currently-issued particle pollution forecasts via e-mail on Monday, April 3rd. The ozone forecasts will continue until mid-to-late September. Air quality forecasts will be issued for Roanoke, Hampton Roads, Winchester and Richmond. Forecasts will be issued through mid-to-late September. If you know someone else who would like to receive these forecasts, please have them sign up to receive the daily forecasts and/or air quality health alerts at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/ConnectWithDEQ/NewsFeeds.aspx. Northern Virginia air quality forecasts are sent out from Clean Air Partners through EnviroFlash via http://www.cleanairpartners.net/airalert.cfm.

DEQ will issue forecasts for the following day by 3:10 pm EDT. An Air Quality Health Advisory will be issued for any region of Virginia where unhealthy levels occur. Color-coded air quality forecasts and the current Air Quality Index (AQI) for Roanoke, Hampton Roads, Winchester, Richmond and Northern Virginia area will be available on the DEQ web site at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityForecasting.aspx. Air quality forecasts are also available via an RSS feed at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/lists/?action=rss_list&id=16 and via the EPA AIRNow web site at http://www.airnow.gov/index.cfm?action=airnow.local_state&stateid=48&tab=0. Additionally, air quality health alerts are available via an RSS feed at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/lists/?action=rss_list&id=15. Generally, our qualitative forecast accuracy is around 80 percent correct in each location.

The AQI may peak well after 6:00 pm in most areas when ozone is the dominant pollutant. It may peak overnight or in the early morning hours in the Shenandoah National Park. The particle pollution AQI is usually higher than the ozone AQI in the morning hours due to the diurnal pattern of ozone formation. Particle pollution levels may stay elevated all day and/or night whereas ozone levels peak in the afternoon and early evening hours. Animated air quality maps for "North Carolina/Virginia" will be found at http://www.airnow.gov/index.cfm?action=airnow.local_state&stateid=48&tab=0. These maps are updated hourly. Maps such as these are also available from weather service data providers such as WSI, Weather Central Inc., and others for on-air use. Television stations are urged to use the air quality maps regularly in conjunction with the DEQ air quality forecasts to inform the public about daily air quality in their area.

DEQ uses a color-code forecast scheme:

Code Green indicates good air quality is expected the following day with either PM2.5 or ozone in the healthy range. Air quality is considered satisfactory with little or no risk.
Code Yellow indicates moderate air quality is expected the following day with either PM2.5 or ozone in the moderate range. Unusually sensitive people should consider limiting or rescheduling strenuous outdoor activities.
Please note: An Air Quality Action Day will begin at the Code Orange level. A Code Orange Air Quality Action Day indicates unhealthy-for-sensitive-groups air quality is expected the following day. Active children and adults and people with cardio or respiratory diseases such as asthma, bronchitis, or emphysema should limit or reschedule strenuous outdoor activities.
A Code Red Air Quality Action Day indicates unhealthy air quality is expected the following day. Active children and adults, and people with cardio or respiratory diseases such as asthma, bronchitis or emphysema should avoid prolonged strenuous outdoor activities. Everyone else, especially children, should limit prolonged strenuous outdoor activities.
A Code Purple Air Quality Action Day indicates very unhealthy air quality is expected the following day. Active children and adults, people unusually sensitive to air pollution, especially those with heart or lung disease (including asthma), and older adults should avoid all outdoor strenuous activities. Everyone else should limit strenuous outdoor activities.

If you have any questions or would like further information, please contact Bill Hayden, Communications Manager, DEQ Public Information and Outreach at William.Hayden@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4447, Mike Kiss, DEQ Meteorologist at Michael.Kiss@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4460, Kristen Stumpf, DEQ Meteorologist at Kristen.Stumpf@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4414, or me, Dan Salkovitz, DEQ Meteorologist at Daniel.Salkovitz@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4404 (usually 6:30 am-3:15 pm).

Dan Salkovitz
Meteorologist
Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
Mailing address: P.O. Box 1105, Richmond, VA 23218
Street address: 629 E. Main St., 8th Floor, Richmond, VA 23219
Phone: (804) 698-4404 Fax: (804) 698-4510
Phone toll-free in Virginia: (1-800) 592-5482 ext. 4404
Work e-mail: Daniel.Salkovitz@deq.virginia.gov
Air Quality Forecast Webpage:
http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityForecasting.aspx
Office of Air Quality Assessments Webpage:
http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityAssessments.aspx

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: March 27, 2017 at 8:52 am

Seasonal suspension of daily ozone forecasts as of September 23rd; Daily particle pollution forecasts continue year-round

Seasonal suspension of daily ozone forecasts as of September 23rd; Daily particle pollution forecasts continue year-round

As we enter fall, days grow shorter and temperatures cool. And ground-level ozone concentrations remain in the good or, at worst, moderate range. As a result, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality will suspend daily ground-level ozone forecasts for Richmond, Hampton Roads, Winchester and Roanoke as of Friday, September 23rd (the last ozone forecast will be issued on Thursday, September 22nd). However, daily air quality forecasts for particle pollution will continue through the fall, winter and spring for Richmond, Hampton Roads, Roanoke and Winchester. They will continue to be emailed daily and posted at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityForecasting.aspx. Ozone forecasts for Richmond, Roanoke, Winchester and Hampton Roads will resume in Spring 2017 when warmer, ozone-conducive weather returns.

Dan Salkovitz
Meteorologist
Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
8th floor, Air Division
Mailing address: P.O. Box 1105, Richmond, VA 23218
Street address: 629 E. Main St., Richmond, VA 23219
Phone: (804) 698-4404 Fax: (804) 698-4510
Phone toll-free in Virginia: (1-800) 592-5482 ext. 4404
Daniel.Salkovitz@deq.virginia.gov
Access the Air Quality Forecast Webpage:
http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityForecasting.aspx
Access the Office of Air Quality Assessments Webpage:
http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityAssessments.aspx

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: September 16, 2016 at 2:52 pm

Code orange air quality in the Richmond and Hampton Roads areas as of 3:00 pm, July 27, 2016

As of 3:00 pm, Wednesday, July 27th, the estimated Air Quality Index (AQI) in the Richmond and Hampton Roads areas based upon the current ground-level ozone concentrations is in the Code Orange range (http://vadeq.tx.sutron.com/cgi-bin/air_quality_forecast.pl). Active children and adults, and people with respiratory diseases, such as asthma, should limit strenuous outdoor activities through this evening.

DEQ recommends that people take these voluntary steps:
-- Avoid unnecessary car trips. Combine errands.
-- Share a ride or use public transportation.
-- Limit or halt use of gasoline-powered lawn equipment and solvents.
-- Avoid excessive engine idling.
-- Telecommute.
-- Conserve electricity.
-- Avoid burning yard debris or brush.

The air quality forecasts for Thursday, July 28th is code green/good for ozone in the Richmond area and moderate for ozone in the Hampton Roads area.

Dan Salkovitz
VADEQ Meteorologist

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: July 27, 2016 at 3:15 pm

Wildfire Smoke Information

SMOKE INFORMATION:
Due to areas of Virginia that are subject to smoke from wildfires in the Shenandoah National Park and Hyde County, North Carolina depending on wind and plume direction, here are some general guidelines for citizens to use in assessing local air quality conditions whenever there is wildfire smoke present:

- If you can smell smoke with no visibility impairment, air quality levels are probably in the Code Orange range, or Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups. At Code Orange levels, people with heart or lung disease, older adults and children should reduce prolonged or strenuous outdoor activities. People who are active outdoors also should take it easier to limit their exposure to particle pollution.

- If you can smell smoke with minor visibility impairment (visibility 1 to 3 miles), air quality levels are probably in the Code Red range, or generally Unhealthy. At Code Red levels, people with heart or lung disease, older adults and children should avoid prolonged or strenuous outdoor activities; everyone else should reduce prolonged or strenuous outdoor activities.

- If you can smell smoke with significant visibility impairment (visibility less than 1 mile), air quality levels are probably in the Code Purple range, or Very Unhealthy. At Code Purple levels, people with heart or lung disease, older adults and children should avoid all outdoor strenuous activities; everyone else should avoid prolonged or strenuous outdoor activities.

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: April 21, 2016 at 3:03 pm

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality Will Resume Ozone Air Quality Forecasts via E-mail on Monday, April 18th

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality Will Resume Ozone Air Quality Forecasts via E-mail on Monday, April 18th
The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will resume ground-level ozone air quality forecasts in addition to the currently-issued particle pollution forecasts via e-mail on Monday, April 18th. The ozone forecasts will continue until mid-to-late September. Air quality forecasts will be issued for Roanoke, Hampton Roads, Winchester and Richmond. Forecasts will be issued through mid-to-late September. If you know someone else who would like to receive these forecasts, please have them sign up to receive the daily forecasts and/or air quality health alerts at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/ConnectWithDEQ/NewsFeeds.aspx. Northern Virginia air quality forecasts are sent out from Clean Air Partners via http://www.cleanairpartners.net/airalert.cfm.

DEQ will issue forecasts for the following day by 3:10 pm EDT. An Air Quality Health Advisory will be issued for any region of Virginia where unhealthy levels occur. Color-coded air quality forecasts and the current Air Quality Index (AQI) for Roanoke, Hampton Roads, Winchester, Richmond and Northern Virginia area will be available on the DEQ web site at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityForecasting.aspx. Air quality forecasts are also available via an RSS feed at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/lists/?action=rss_list&id=16 and via the EPA AIRNow web site at http://www.airnow.gov/index.cfm?action=airnow.local_state&stateid=48&tab=0. Additionally, air quality health alerts are available via an RSS feed at http://www.deq.virginia.gov/lists/?action=rss_list&id=15. Generally, our qualitative forecast accuracy is around 80 percent correct in each location.

The AQI may peak well after 6:00 pm in most areas when ozone is the dominant pollutant. It may peak overnight or in the early morning hours in the Shenandoah National Park. The particle pollution AQI is usually higher than the ozone AQI in the morning hours due to the diurnal pattern of ozone formation. Particle pollution levels may stay elevated all day and/or night whereas ozone levels peak in the afternoon and early evening hours. Animated air quality maps for "North Carolina/Virginia" will be found at http://www.airnow.gov/index.cfm?action=airnow.local_state&stateid=48&tab=0. These maps are updated hourly. Maps such as these are also available from weather service data providers such as WSI, Weather Central Inc., and others for on-air use. Television stations are urged to use the air quality maps regularly in conjunction with the DEQ air quality forecasts to inform the public about daily air quality in their area.

DEQ uses a color-code forecast scheme:

Code Green indicates good air quality is expected the following day with either PM2.5 or ozone in the healthy range. Air quality is considered satisfactory with little or no risk.
Code Yellow indicates moderate air quality is expected the following day with either PM2.5 or ozone in the moderate range. Unusually sensitive people should consider limiting or rescheduling strenuous outdoor activities.
Please note: An Air Quality Action Day will begin at the Code Orange level. A Code Orange Air Quality Action Day indicates unhealthy-for-sensitive-groups air quality is expected the following day. Active children and adults and people with cardio or respiratory diseases such as asthma, bronchitis, or emphysema should limit or reschedule strenuous outdoor activities.
A Code Red Air Quality Action Day indicates unhealthy air quality is expected the following day. Active children and adults, and people with cardio or respiratory diseases such as asthma, bronchitis or emphysema should avoid prolonged strenuous outdoor activities. Everyone else, especially children, should limit prolonged strenuous outdoor activities.
A Code Purple Air Quality Action Day indicates very unhealthy air quality is expected the following day. Active children and adults, people unusually sensitive to air pollution, especially those with heart or lung disease (including asthma), and older adults should avoid all outdoor strenuous activities. Everyone else should limit strenuous outdoor activities.

If you have any questions or would like further information, please contact Bill Hayden, Communications Manager, DEQ Public Information and Outreach at William.Hayden@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4447, Mike Kiss, DEQ Meteorologist at Michael.Kiss@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4460, Kristen Stumpf, DEQ Meteorologist at Kristen.Stumpf@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4414, or me, Dan Salkovitz, DEQ Meteorologist at Daniel.Salkovitz@deq.virginia.gov or (804) 698-4404 (usually 6:30 am-3:15 pm).

Dan Salkovitz
Meteorologist
Virginia Department of Environmental Quality
Mailing address: P.O. Box 1105, Richmond, VA 23218
Street address: 629 E. Main St., 8th Floor, Richmond, VA 23219
Phone: (804) 698-4404 Fax: (804) 698-4510
Phone toll-free in Virginia: (1-800) 592-5482 ext. 4404
Work e-mail: Daniel.Salkovitz@deq.virginia.gov
Air Quality Forecast Webpage:
http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityForecasting.aspx
Office of Air Quality Assessments Webpage:
http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/AirQualityAssessments.aspx

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: April 04, 2016 at 7:51 am