Air quality drops as smoke from Georgia fire reaches the Triangle

People sensitive to air quality should be careful Sunday afternoon as strong winds are carrying smoke from a wildfire in Georgia to the Triangle.

The National Weather Service in Raleigh said southwest winds are pushing the smoke up from the southeast Georgia fire.

The Division of Environmental Quality air quality index number for the Triangle hit the orange alert level, meaning people who are sensitive to air quality, such as children, the elderly and those with lung disease, should stay inside.

Jamie Kritzer, acting deputy secretary for public affairs for the Department of Environmental Quality, said in an interview Sunday that people with respiratory issues should use caution while the smoke is around.

He said monitoring stations in Durham and Raleigh showed higher air particle pollution in those cities but not at other stations in the area.

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