ALLENTOWN, Pa. - For the second day in a row, Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection has issued a Code Orange Air Quality Action Day for much of our area.
The culprit of the air quality issues is hundreds of miles away.
If you were outside at all Tuesday or Wednesday, you probably noticed the hazy skies. Experts say that's because of wildfires in Canada.
"Very strange to see the sky hazy from smoke from fires 3,000 miles away," said Justin Tresolini, who was enjoying a walk at Trexler Park in Allentown Wednesday morning.
The fires are burning in parts of northern and western Canada.
"The smoke from Canadian wildfires have drifted to the commonwealth," said Jamar Thrasher, press secretary for the Pa. Department of Environmental Protection. "Smoke contributes to an increase in fine particulate matter."
The agency issued a Code Orange Air Quality Action Day for the second day in a row Wednesday.
"It represents an unhealthy pollution level for those sensitive groups," Thrasher said.
Lehigh Valley Health Network Dr. Joseph Schellenberg says those sensitive groups include people with pre-existing respiratory conditions.
"Particularly , people who are pre-susceptible, like those with lung disease., emphysema, asthma," he said.
People with those conditions should avoid the outdoors. Even little exposure can be problematic for those populations.
"I feel bad for people who can't enjoy it like they want to because of the hazy sky," Tresolini said. "Kind of makes for a beautiful moon...but the reason is kind of sad."
Those without pre-existing conditions shouldn't be bothered by limited exposure.
But Dr. Schellenberg said extended exposure could cause coughing and shortness of breath.
The DEP is also asking people to reduce or eliminate fireplace and woodstove use, open burning of leaves trash and other materials, and avoiding the use of gas-powered lawn and garden equipment.