Wildfire smoke harming metro Denver air quality

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DENVER — Health officials issued a Wildfire Smoke Health Advisory for Colorado’s Front Range, including metro Denver, Wednesday due to poor air quality caused by several wildfires burning across the Rocky Mountain Region.

“Wildfires in Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah will contribute to haze across Colorado,” the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment said. “This smoke will cause Fine Particulate concentrations to reach Moderate to Unhealthy-for-Sensitive-Groups concentrations across much of northeastern Colorado on Wednesday afternoon and evening.”

The health department says the smoke can be attributed to the Waldo Canyon Fire in Colorado Springs, the Pine Ridge Fire northeast of Grand Junction, the Wolf Den Fire near the Colorado-Utah state line, and the Squirrel Creek Fire southwest of Laramie, Wyoming.

Experts warn that if visibility is less than five miles due to smoke in your area, smoke has reached levels that are unhealthy. Based on live cameras in downtown Denver, it appears the metro area is nearing or has reached that threshold.

“Active children and adults, the elderly, and those with respiratory illnesses such as asthma should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion on Wednesday afternoon and evening,” the health department said.