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Unhealthy air quality blankets Missoula County

mso smoke
Posted at 11:01 AM, Sep 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-10 13:02:09-04

MISSOULA — Wildfire smoke is continuing to adversely impact the air quality in Missoula County.

Unhealthy air quality was being reported in Missoula and Seeley Lake on Friday morning while in Frenchtown the air was considered “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups.”

When air quality is Unhealthy, people with heart or lung disease, smokers, children and the elderly should limit heavy or prolonged exertion and limit time spent outdoors.

People with asthma should follow their asthma management plan. People experiencing symptoms of heart or lung disease associated with smoke exposure should contact their health care provider.

When air quality is Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups, people with heart or lung disease, children and the elderly should limit prolonged outdoor exertion.

Anyone experiencing symptoms of heart or lung disease associated with smoke exposure should contact their health care provider.

Missoula City-County Health Department Air Quality Specialist Sarah Coefield stated in her update that conditions are expected to “stay pretty stable throughout the day with minor fluctuations between Unhealthy and Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups.”

The Crooks Fire burning in the Jocko has continued to actively burn, and Thursday night fire protection personnel conducted a backburn to slow its spread. The combination of fire activity and intentional burning has sent a lot of smoke down the Jocko drainages.

The air quality in Seeley Lake and the Arlee Valley is still considered ‘Unhealthy,’ but it is worse than air quality in other parts of the Missoula County area, according to Coefield.

A shift in the overhead winds which is expected Friday night will send smoke from California and Oregon south of Missoula County and the air quality is expected to improve.

Click here to view air quality readings from across Montana.