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A Haze of "Hazardous" Smoke Is Currently Affecting the Air Quality in Sydney

NSW Health has issued an air quality alert following wayward smoke from burning off in the Blue Mountains.
By Libby Curran
May 22, 2019
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A Haze of "Hazardous" Smoke Is Currently Affecting the Air Quality in Sydney

NSW Health has issued an air quality alert following wayward smoke from burning off in the Blue Mountains.
By Libby Curran
May 22, 2019
  shares

Sydneysiders venturing outdoors this morning could find the whole breathing thing a little less fun than usual — as you may have noticed, it's pretty smoky out there. As the result of a controlled burn in the Blue Mountains, a layer of smoke has made its way across the city and is expected to stick around throughout the morning.

Needless to say, it's affecting air quality, with the Office of Environment and Heritage labelling it as "very poor" in the Sydney CBD and "hazardous" in southwest Sydney this morning. It's also prompted an alert from NSW Health. While haze from reduction burns is often unpredictable, NSW Health Director of Environmental Health Dr Richard Broome explained the smoke was likely to affect a number of places across Sydney while it's here, and that locals should simply be aware.

"For most people, smoke will be no more than an irritation," he said. "However, I recommend that people with existing heart and lung conditions should avoid outdoor physical activity when there's smoke around."

This follows a smoky Tuesday, too. While the Bureau of Meteorology confirmed a slight improvement to air quality yesterday afternoon, the smoke haze is back and laying it on strong today.

The NSW Rural Fire Service tweeted that this particular smoke was from a controlled burn in the Blue Mountains, which started on Sunday. It's now postponed all other reduction burns in the Sydney area for a 24-hour period.

The haze is unlikely to lift until around lunchtime. If you suffer from asthma or any other heart or lung conditions, just be mindful that the change in air conditions could affect you. NSW Health advises that you carry your inhaler or any other medical relief.

Published on May 22, 2019 by Libby Curran

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