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New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services

Media Center

DATE: June 29, 2018
CONTACT: Amanda McQuaid (603) 271-0698 (O), 848-8094 (C)

NHDES Declares Air Quality Action Day
Unhealthy Air Pollution Levels Predicted for Monday, July 2nd and Beyond

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) is expecting air pollution concentrations to reach unhealthy levels for sensitive individuals in Belknap, Carroll, Cheshire, Grafton, Hillsborough, Merrimack, Rockingham, Strafford, and Sullivan Counties, and at elevations above 3000 feet on Monday, July 2. These air quality conditions are expected to continue during the heatwave. Advisories may be extended early next week for July 3rd through July 6th if needed.

NHDES officials are calling for an Air Quality Action Day and advise sensitive individuals in these areas to take precautions to protect their health by limiting prolonged or outdoor exertion. Sensitive individuals include children and older adults; anyone with lung disease such as asthma, emphysema, and bronchitis; and people who are active outdoors. Even healthy individuals may experience mild health effects and should consider limiting strenuous or prolonged outdoor activities.

NHDES forecasts unhealthy concentrations of ground-level ozone (the main component of smog) for sensitive individuals in the above-mentioned regions. In addition, moderate levels of fine particle pollution are expected statewide during this event. The predicted unhealthy air quality comes from the persistence of high temperatures under sunny skies and winds transporting pollution into New Hampshire from surrounding areas in combination with local emissions. These air quality conditions may continue throughout the heatwave until cooler weather and cleaner air move into the state late next week. Additional advisories will be issued as needed.

Symptoms of ozone exposure include coughing, wheezing, chest tightness or pain when inhaling deeply, and shortness of breath. The severity of the health effects increases as ozone concentrations increase.

For further information, contact NHDES at (603) 419-9697. For air quality forecasts and current air pollution levels in New Hampshire, call 1-800-935-SMOG or visit the NHDES website at

NH Department of Environmental Services | 29 Hazen Drive | PO Box 95 | Concord, NH 03302-0095
(603) 271-3503 | TDD Access: Relay NH 1-800-735-2964 | Hours: M-F, 8am-4pm

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