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Wildfires In The West, Canada Cause Air Quality Alert In Indiana

The CZU lightning complex fire in 2020 burns along Butano Ridge and in Pescadero Creek Park, in the Santa Cruz Mountains, California. This fire would later grow to more than 85,000 acres and destroy more than 900 structures. (Inklein/Wikimedia Commons)

Smoke from wildfires out west and in Canada has triggered a statewide air quality action day for Wednesday and Thursday. The Indiana Department of Environmental Management expects high levels of particle pollution in all regions of Indiana.

These tiny particles can get in your lungs and cause health issues. People with heart or lung diseases, children, and older adults are especially vulnerable to particle pollution — which also comes from sources like coal plants and industrial facilities.

IDEM recommends people avoid spending a lot of time outside, exercising near busy roads, making unnecessary fires, or using gas-powered equipment.

The agency also suggests people drive less, don’t let your car idle, and conserve energy by turning off lights and setting your thermostat to 75 degrees or higher.

Contact reporter Rebecca at or follow her on Twitter at @beckythiele.

Indiana Environmental reporting is supported by the Environmental Resilience Institute, an Indiana University Grand Challenge project developing Indiana-specific projections and informed responses to problems of environmental change.