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Forest fires in US, Canada cause air contamination, building up Covid risks

Source : 112 Ukraine

Over the last few weeks, the flames engulfed more than 500,000 hectares of area in the U.S.; British Columbia declared state of emergency
08:47, 21 July 2021

Forest fire in British Columbia
Associated Press.

Forest fires that are ravaging in the western territories of the U.S. and Canada disgorged smoke and ash, which flew to the east, reaching New York city and caused dangerous contamination of the air.

"Heavy exposure to wildfire smoke has been linked to long-term respiratory consequences for firefighters, including a sharply elevated risk of developing asthma, according to a University of Alberta study released this week", writes Reuters.

Federal air resource adviser Margaret Key reported that the influence of the smoke caused by forest fires increased perception to respiratory infections, including Covid-19; it makes the recovery process more complicated.

"In 13 western states, more than 80 large active wildfires have charred almost 1.3 million acres (526,090 hectares) of drought-parched vegetation in recent weeks, an area larger than Delaware, according to the National Interagency Fire Center (NIFC) in Boise, Idaho. Several hundred additional fires have burned in western and central Canada. They included 86 classified as out of control on Tuesday in British Columbia alone, leading officials there to declare a state of emergency", the European news agency goes on.

Related: Large-scale fire at timber warehouse in Kharkiv

The air currents carried the smoke and ash thousands of miles across the country; residents of distant cities complained about sore eyes and breathing troubles.

In Philadelphia and Hartford, locals are recommended to wear their masks outside to limit the dangerous influence of the fires.

Related: Rescuers extinguish large-scale fire in Kyiv

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