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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

Code Orange air quality in Richmond this morning, June 25, 2008

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Dan Salkovitz at (804) 698-4404 or Mike Kiss at (804) 698-4460.

Smoke from the Great Dismal Swamp and Hyde County, NC wildfires has drifted back over the Richmond metropolitan area this morning. As a result, air quality has deteriorated into the Code Orange (Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups) range based on fine particle concentrations.
Active children and adults, and people with respiratory diseases, such as asthma, should limit strenuous outdoor activities through the morning hours. Code Orange air quality is expected to continue through the mid-morning hours. Forecasts and current conditions are posted at www.deq.virginia.gov/airquality. Forecasts are updated after 3:00 pm.

DEQ recommends that people avoid burning yard debris or brush today.

Here are some general guidelines for citizens to use in assessing local air quality conditions during the current wildfire event:

- 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, 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, 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.

Dan Salkovitz
VADEQ Meteorologist

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: June 25, 2008 at 7:44 am

Code Orange Air Quality throughout Virginia Due to Smoke, June 14

Air quality across most of the State of Virginia continues to be affected by the smoke from the fires in eastern North Carolina and the Great Dismal Swamp in eastern Virginia.

Air quality is expected to improve in Virginia from northwest to southeast beginning Saturday evening into Sunday as a weak cold front pushes through the region.

Air quality across most of the State of Virginia continues to be affected by the smoke from the fires in eastern North Carolina and the Great Dismal Swamp in eastern Virginia.

The air quality index this morning in the western part of the State (Roanoke, Charlottesville and Winchester corridor)is in the Code Orange range due to particle pollution. The poor air quality is expected to shift eastward into Richmond and Hampton Roads today as the wind shifts to a southwesterly direction. Air quality is expected to improve from northwest to southeast beginning Saturday evening into Sunday as a weak cold front pushes through the region.

Active children and adults, and people with heart diseases or respiratory ailments, such as asthma, should limit strenuous activities through today. The current air quality index and forecast is available at:

www.deq.virginia.gov/airquality

Mike Kiss
VADEQ Meteorologist

From: Mike Kiss

Sent: June 14, 2008 at 10:23 am

Code Orange air quality in Charlottesville, Richmond and Roanoke as of 12:00 noon, Friday, June 13th

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Dan Salkovitz at (804) 698-4404 or Mike Kiss at (804) 698-4460.

As of 12:00 noon, Friday, June 13th, the estimated Air Quality Index (AQI) in the Charlottesville, Richmond and Roanoke areas based upon current ground-level ozone and fine particle concentrations is in the Code Orange range. Active children and adults, and people with respiratory diseases, such as asthma, should limit strenuous outdoor activities through this evening. Code Orange air quality is expected to continue through the early evening hours. However, if pollution levels continue to rise, a Code Red Health Alert may be issued this afternoon.

Forecasts and current conditions are posted at www.deq.virginia.gov/airquality. Forecasts are updated after 3:00 pm.

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.

Dan Salkovitz
VADEQ Meteorologist

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: June 13, 2008 at 12:35 pm

Code Orange air quality in Charlottesville and Caroline County as of 6:00 pm, Thursday, June 12th

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

As of 6:00 pm, Thursday, June 12th, the estimated Air Quality Index (AQI) in Charlottesville and Caroline County based upon current ground-level ozone concentrations is in the Code Orange range. Active children and adults, and people with respiratory diseases, such as asthma, should limit strenuous outdoor activities through this evening. Code Orange air quality is expected to continue through the early evening hours.

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.

Dan Salkovitz
VADEQ Meteorologist

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: June 12, 2008 at 6:40 pm

Code Red air quality in Richmond as of 6:00 pm, June 12th.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

As of 6:00 pm, Thursday, June 12th, the Air Quality Index (AQI) in the Richmond area based upon current ground-level ozone concentrations has deteriorated from Code Orange into the Code Red range. Active children and adults, and people with respiratory diseases, such as asthma, should avoid strenuous outdoor activities through this evening. The general public may begin to experience health effects and limit strenuous outdoor activities; members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effects.

In addition, the air quality forecast for Friday, June 13th for Richmond is Code Orange - Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups air quality. Active children and adults, and people with respiratory diseases, such as asthma, should limit strenuous outdoor activities tomorrow afternoon through tomorrow 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.

Dan Salkovitz
VADEQ Meteorologist

From: Dan Salkovitz

Sent: June 12, 2008 at 6:37 pm