Thursday, June 1, 2023
Multiple fires may impact the air quality for Atlantic County residents for an unknown period of time, though there are no current alerts.
Firefighters continue to battle a wildfire at Bass River State Forest in the Pine Barrens of Burlington and Ocean counties that was first reported on 5/30/23. The fire has burned 120 acres and resulted in several road closures and evacuations. In addition, smoke from the raging Tantallon wildfire burning in Nova Scotia, Canada may compound air quality concerns in the region.
Atlantic County public health officials remind residents to take precautions as wildfire smoke can pose a threat to those with heart and lung conditions, pregnant women, older adults, children, and outdoor workers.
If you have asthma or other lung conditions, follow your respiratory management plan. See a doctor if you have a hard time breathing or if your normal symptoms worsen. People with chronic diseases should check with their healthcare provider about precautions needed ahead of smoke events.
To help limit exposure to wildfire smoke residents may consider staying indoors, limiting outdoor physical activity, using respiratory protection (masking) appropriately, and keeping windows closed to help keep indoor air as clean as possible.
Several online resources are available to obtain information about active wildfires and the air quality in your neighborhood. The New Jersey Forest Fire Services (https://www.nj.gov/dep/parksandforests/fire/) and The AirNow website (www.airnow.gov) provide reports based on the Air Quality Index (AQI) which is a nationally uniform index for reporting and predicting daily air quality across the country.