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As smoke from Canadian wildfires continues to travel across the United States, many areas in the country are experiencing harmful air quality levels. It’s crucial to listen to air quality alerts to stay safe. However, monitoring air quality can also help you determine when it’s safe to go outdoors. Air quality levels can fluctuate throughout the day, depending on the time and amount of smoke present in an area.
Here are some apps that can assist you in tracking air quality levels.
AirNow Mobile App
The AirNow Mobile App was developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, which supervises air quality nationwide. This app allows users to input their ZIP code or city to access the most up-to-date air quality information. Additionally, the app features a fire and smoke map that tracks the areas with the highest concentration of smoke.
IQAir AirVisual | Air Quality App
The IQAir AirVisual | Air Quality app is available for both iPhone and Android users. It provides real-time air quality readings and useful contextual information about air quality in specific regions. The app also ranks cities by their pollution levels, with New York City experiencing extremely poor air quality levels this week. When air quality reaches unhealthy levels, the app will advise you to wear a mask outdoors, use an air filter at home, close windows, and avoid outdoor activities.
For those looking for more in-depth information, the Plume Labs app provides detailed maps of pollution hotspots. The app also features an hourly air quality forecast as levels often fluctuate during the day. Furthermore, the app sends alerts when air quality levels worsen. It’s available for both iPhone and Android users.
The AirCare app provides air quality information in addition to useful guidance. The app displays the message “You can breathe freely” when air quality is healthy. It also tracks allergens such as tree, grass, and ragweed pollen, as well as the UV index, and provides recommendations like “avoid sun around noon, seek shade and use sunscreen” when UV radiation from the sun is high.
Other resources for air quality information
Several weather apps, such as Apple, The Weather Channel, and AccuWeather, provide air quality levels, as well as weather forecasts. You can also find details about air quality safety on the National Weather Service website.