People should avoid time outdoors as much as possible, especially active children, the elderly, anyone pregnant, and those with asthma, COPD, emphysema, heart disease, or COVID.
The small particles in wildfire smoke can irritate the eyes, nose and throat, and can affect the heart and lungs, making it harder to breathe.
You can reduce contributing to the issue by:
- Avoiding vehicle idling, including when in drive-thru lanes or picking up carry-out
- Using active forms of transportation like walking or biking
- Utilizing public transportation or carpool with services such as IndyGo or Commuter Connect
- Waiting to refuel and mow until after 7 p.m.
- Combining errands to reduce number of trips
- Conserving energy by turning off lights or setting the air conditioner to 75 degrees or above
- Delaying use of garden, household, and workshop chemicals until air has returned to healthy levels
- Never burning trash. Burning trash is illegal in Marion County.
Air pollutants like ozone and particulate matter can cause increased hospitalizations, asthma, bronchitis, heart attacks, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and premature death.
Nearly 11% of Indianapolis residents have asthma and 8.6% have COPD. Both of these figures are higher than the national average.
For more information on how to help improve central Indiana’s air quality, click here.