Wildfire smoke clouds Ottawa region


Hazy, smoky conditions are engulfing the nation’s capital, and Environment Canada has issued a special air quality statement for the region.

The federal department says high levels of air pollution have developed in Ottawa, Gatineau and other nearby municipalities due to smoke from nearby wildfires.

Wildfires in Quebec and Southeastern Ontario over the weekend have caused thousands of people to be evacuated from their homes.

Environment Canada is warning that wildfire smoke can be harmful to public health, even at low concentrations.

It is advising people in the area to take precautions to protect their health and reduce exposure, including wearing masks, avoiding outdoor activities and contacting health-care providers if they are experiencing irregular symptoms.

People with lung disease, heart disease, elderly adults, pregnant people and people who work outdoors are at a higher risk of experiencing health effects caused by smoke and smog.