Here we go again.

This past summer, we dealt with smoky conditions from the wildfires that were burning in Canada. The images were staggering, and the smoke was debilitating. For a couple of days, it was smoky, and for some it was hard to breathe.

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This morning, there are posts all over social media complaining about a smoky smell and hazy skies. Per the National Weather Service office in Binghamton: "Smoky skies today across central NY and much of northeast PA. If you smell a little smoke today it is from fires in the central and southern Appalachian mountains and a strong southwest wind. The winds are blowing the smoke into our area."

US National Weather Service Binghamton NY via Facebook
US National Weather Service Binghamton NY via Facebook

As of this writing, the Air Quality Index number sits at 65, or moderate. If you are unusually sensitive to particle pollution, consider reducing your activity level or shorten the amount of time you are active outdoors.

If you suffer from asthma, COPD, heart disease, diabetes, other chronic conditions or acute infections such as COVID-19 might be at higher risk of effects from the lingering smoke. It's going to be warmish today, but it's not a great day to open up the windows, keep them closed and the smoke out.

If you smell smoke creeping inside and have a portable air cleaner with a HEPA filter, use it. If you are sensitive to air quality and have to venture outside, consider using a well fitting N95 respirator mask. As we saw during the pandemic, they're best for filtering out fine particulates.

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