Smoke-filled air in Colorado from western wildfires sparks health advisory

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DENVER -- A smoky haze from the wildfires along the Pacific coast is causing a health advisory for parts of Colorado until at least Friday morning.

“The upper level winds will take that smoke out of California, the coastal area, and basically just escorts it right to Colorado,” meteorologist Chris Tomer said.

A big bummer for last minute summer playtime.

“We want to play outside as much as we can before we’re in school every day,” mother of two Molly Psyllas said.

Kindergarten starts Monday, so it's not a good time to get a cold.

“All three of us have been sniffling and sneezing so I don’t really want to inhale any extra smoke if I don’t have to,” Psyllas said.

Medical experts said the smoke can flare up allergies.

“Often times the symptoms of an upper respiratory irritation from these conditions can be similar to allergies or add onto allergies,” Chief Medical Information Officer of National Jewish Health David Beuther said.

It is the most dangerous for the young, elderly and those with heart or respiratory conditions.

“For our patients when there are one of these advisories we recommend they try and limit their outdoor activity,” Beuther said.

Even healthy Coloradans should be aware of the advisory.

“If they’re exercising or running, perhaps doing something very vigorous or spending a long time outdoors in a high level of pollution, they’ll get similar symptoms. Scratchy throat, cough; if those symptoms persist they should stop the activity and contact their health provider,” Beuther said.

It could be a few days before the smoke clears.

“Oftentimes whatever sinks down here gets stuck here until a cold front blows it out. The next chance of this smoke getting moved out and scrubbed out of Denver is not until Saturday night,” Tomer said.


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