NW Ohio air quality worst on record as air reaches “unhealthy” level

Submit your photos & videos of the haze from the wildfire smoke below
Canadian wildfires cause poor air quality
Published: Jun. 27, 2023 at 12:18 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 29, 2023 at 1:19 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - Poor air quality conditions from Canadian wildfire smoke continued into the third straight day in northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan, causing health concerns for many and prompting some outdoor activity cancellations.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency extended its Air Quality Advisory to last through Thursday as different regions in the state fluctuate between very unhealthy and unhealthy status. It comes after northwest Ohio saw the worst air quality ever recorded on Wednesday. Those records go back to 1999.

The air quality did begin to improve overnight, but things took a very quick turn for the worse Thursday morning when conditions became even worse than the record-breaking levels on Wednesday, particularly in Lucas and Fulton counties. The Air Quality Index (AQI) reached near the hazardous level in Waterville and many locations in the region dipped into the very unhealthy range.

Metroparks Toledo announced all outdoor public programming was canceled for Thursday due to the bad air quality. All summer camp activities were moved indoors.

It comes just two weeks after the Ohio EPA issued a statewide Air Quality Advisory when the wildfire smoke first affected our region.

According to the CDC, people with asthma, heart disease, pregnant people and children should limit outdoor activity where possible and stay indoors. Breathing in wildfire smoke can cause trouble breathing, coughing or wheezing, irritation in the eyes, a scratchy throat, runny nose, headaches, tiredness or chest pain.

Check Ohio’s current air quality status at the link here. Find the federal EPA’s dashboard on wildfires and indoor air quality at the link here. Stay updated with the latest developments by downloading the First Alert Weather app and following our meteorologists on social media.

Submit your photos or videos of the haze from the wildfire smoke below.