The Williamsons From Troy Visit Senator Daines
Submitted by Blake Kernen
The Senator had a great time meeting with a wonderful family, the Williamsons, from Troy on September 8.
“Meeting with Montana families always brightens my day in DC. Thanks for stopping by all the way from Troy, Mont.!” Says Steve Daines
Air Quality Alerts Continue as Counties in Western Montana Reach Unhealthy Levels
Submitted by Moira Davin
The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has issued air quality alerts for most Western Montana counties where air quality has reached unhealthy levels. Many active wildfires in Western Montana, Idaho, and Eastern Oregon are putting out smoke that has blanketed much of the state.
Air quality alerts have been issued for the following counties: Beaverhead, Blaine, Broadwater, Cascade, Chouteau, Deer Lodge, Fergus, Flathead, Gallatin, Glacier, Golden Valley, Granite, Hill, Jefferson, Judith Basin, Lake, Lewis and Clark, Liberty, Lincoln, Madison, Meagher, Mineral, Missoula, Musselshell, Petroleum, Phillips, Pondera, Powell, Ravalli, Sanders, Silver Bow, Stillwater, Sweet Grass, Teton, Toole, Wheatland and Yellowstone.
Air quality is anticipated to remain in the unhealthy range with conditions improving Tuesday, as a low-pressure trough sets into motion a series of disturbances as early as Monday night. Some isolated showers may occur in Southwest Montana. Given the amount of smoke present and the relative strength of the trough, air quality impacts are expected through Tuesday.
Residents and visitors are encouraged to check air quality regularly and follow the guidelines associated with the air quality levels. Where air monitors aren’t present, use visibility guidelines to estimate air quality. To check air quality visit: todaysair.mtdeq.us
Exposure to wildfire pollutants can irritate the lungs, cause inflammation, alter immune function and increase susceptibility to respiratory infections, including COVID-19. Populations known to be most vulnerable to wildfire smoke exposure include children, senior citizens, pregnant people, people with chronic health conditions such as heart or lung disease—including asthma and diabetes—and outdoor workers. Other factors that may contribute to increased vulnerability include homelessness and limited access to medical care. Respiratory symptoms such as dry cough, sore throat and difficulty breathing are common to both wildfire smoke exposure and COVID-19. If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as difficulty breathing or chest pain, you should seek prompt medical attention by calling 911 or calling ahead to the nearest emergency facility.