A car covered in dust from the air sits on a Rutland street in Kelowna. (Carli Berry/Kelowna Capital News)

Some of B.C.’s air quality levels worse than Jodhpur, India

Okanagan, northern B.C. seeing some of the worst air quality globally

Jenifer Calhoun watched as ash settled on her patio furniture and in her children’s sandbox in the backyard of her Kelowna home.

Calhorn and two of her three children have asthma, which is keeping them indoors.

“It’s disgusting, it is way worse than last year,” she said. “Of course, all of our inhalers are used now.”

The family has been avoiding the outdoors.

“There’s been days where you can actually see wisps of smoke in the backyard, like right around face level. I don’t remember seeing that last year. It was actually way up high, and it went away after a week. This is like it’s settled in and it’s not going away,” Calhorn said.

“Little Hailey, she’s been coughing, sputtering tons,” she said. Hailey is four years old.

Calhorn has a cough that won’t go away, and she makes short trips to the grocery store.

A thick blanket of smoke continues to cover the Okanagan.

According to Environment Canada’s Air Quality Index, all of the Okanagan Valley is sitting at 10+ out of 10, which is considered a very high risk.

Related: B.C. city wakes up to darkness under wildfire smoke

Related: Temporary smoke relief in sight for Kelowna

The national forecaster recommends avoiding strenuous outdoor activities, and children and the elderly should avoid outside physical exertion.

As of Saturday morning, Kelowna and Vernon’s air quality was considered hazardous, while Coldstream’s was considered unhealthy, according to a real-time air quality tracker.

Sunday’s predictions for the Okanagan is expected to reach a level of eight.

In terms of air quality measurements, air quality is measured by particulate matter 2.5, called PM2.5, which is the amount of tiny particles or droplets in the air, according to New York State’s Department of Health.

Currently, Prince George has a reading of 402. To compare, Courtenay has no smoke on Vancouver Island and has a rating of 10. Surrey had a reading of 53.

Kelowna currently has worse air than Jodhpur, India, a city which is considered by the World Health Organization to have some of the worst air in the world. Kelowna sits at 287 PM 2.5 as of 8:3o a.m. while Jodhpur is 183. The scale ranges from 1 to 500+. Anything above 100 PM 2.5 is considered to carry a health risk.


edit@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Newly elected Hope politicians took part in the Local Government Leadership Academy

The three-day event is aimed at helping new mayors and councillors navigate municipal politics

No records were beat, but Hope’s February temperatures aren’t average

Normally around 3C, the sub-zero temperatures made for both good and bad in the Fraser Valley

New Chilliwack YMCA was ‘worth the wait’ say visitors

Family Day will mark officially opening for new building, after sneak peek tours on Saturday

Opioid overdoses killing three people a month in Chilliwack

35 deaths in 2018 locally compare to 23 in 2017, 13 in 2016 up from about five per year before that

‘Just like Iron Man’: Calgary surgeon undergoes experimental spinal surgery

Dr. Richi Gill was in a freak accident on a boogie board during a family vacation in Hawaii

Rescue crews search for 2 hikers on Mount Seymour after distress call

North Vancouver RCMP say they don’t know what the nature of the call is yet

Deported B.C. man who came to Canada as a baby granted chance at return

Lee Van Heest was deported to the Netherlands in 2017

Homicide police investigate assault turned deadly in Surrey

60-year-old man died at hospital after assault

A Mother’s Wish: Ryan Shtuka’s mother wants her son to be ‘forever known’

‍‍‍‍‍“Let me tell you a story …. it all began with a boy named Ryan”

Sex abuse survivors to meet with Vatican summit organizers

Pope Francis has urged participants to meet with abuse victims before they came to Rome

Ex-FBI official: ‘Crime may have been committed’ by Trump

Andrew McCabe said FBI had good reason to open a counterintelligence investigation into whether Trump was in league with Russia

Most Read