Air Quality Expected To Take A Dive This Week

Steve Miller
July 06, 2020 - 7:46 pm
Smog Chicago

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(WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The Illinois EPA says Monday was a day of “unhealthy air quality for sensitive groups,” like people with respiratory disease.  What does it mean for most of the rest of us?

Say you are in reasonably good health and you like to run outside. Will the high air pollution levels that the Chicago area is recording now hurt you?

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Angela Tin, national senior director for the American Lung Association, says you may have some short-term effects.

“It’ll be hard to get that oxygen into your lungs. You’ll start wheezing a little bit. You’ll start coughing,” Tin said. “It’s just hard to get that air to go evenly into your lungs and out of your lungs because there’s ozone in the air.”

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Long term effects? Respiratory problems after the ozone has gone deep into your lungs. After a period of time, other parts of the body will be affected: the heart, the circulatory system and even the brain.

And the masks that may be somewhat useful against Covid are not so useful against pollution, because some of those pollutant chemicals are very small.