The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection has issued a code orange air quality alert Wednesday, July 10th 2019, for the Lehigh Valley/Berks County area.
A code orange air quality alert means that air pollution concentrations within the region may become unhealthy for sensitive groups. Sensitive groups include children, people suffering from asthma, heart disease or other lung diseases, and the elderly. The effects of air pollution can be minimized by avoiding strenuous activity or exercise outdoors.
Children are at higher risk because they spend more time outdoors and their developing lungs are prone to damage. Older adults are at higher risk because they have a higher chance of pre-existing respiratory or cardiovascular diseases, and as they get older, their bodies are less able to deal with such hazards. Other risk factors include family history of heart disease or stroke, high blood pressure, activity levels and socioeconomic factors such as limited access to medical care and proper nutrition.