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Air Quality in Newfoundland and Labrador

Public AdvisoriesCentralLabrador-GrenfellWestern
Posted: June 23, 2023

Newfoundland and Labrador Health Services encourage the public in western and central Labrador, as well as western and central Newfoundland, to take precautions to protect their health due to smoke from distant wildfires that may cause a reduction in air quality.

The following groups are considered at higher risk of experiencing health effects from smoke:

  • people who are pregnant
  • young children
  • older people
  • people who have underlying medical conditions, and
  • people who physically exert themselves outside for work or sports.

Minor symptoms can include headaches, a mild cough, sore and watery eyes, and nose and throat irritation. More serious, but less common symptoms, can include severe cough, shortness of breath, heart palpitations and wheezing.

The best way to protect against the potentially harmful effects of wildfire smoke is to reduce your exposure to smoke and seek cleaner air:

  • Keep windows and doors closed and stay cool – seal them properly with weather stripping if necessary.
  • Find clean cool air.
  • Limit outdoor and strenuous activity – pay attention to air quality and weather forecasts and reschedule outdoor activities for a time when conditions are better.
  • Use a portable HEPA air cleaner to filter the air in one area of your home.
  • Visit public spaces such as community centres, libraries, and stores which tend to have cleaner, cooler indoor air.
  • Drink water to reduce inflammation caused by exposure to smoke.
  • Care for others – watch out for those who are vulnerable to wildfire smoke.

Residents are encouraged to contact 811 or to see a health-care provider if they experience any new or concerning symptoms that they feel could be related to the smoke. If you have a chronic health condition and you use rescue medications, make sure that you have enough medication at home and carry it with you when there is wildfire smoke in the area.

Residents in the province can check air quality in their region by consulting the Air Quality Health Index  on the Government of Canada website at

The “Show health messages” link at the top of the webpage provides specific information depending on the level of risk. Please note that health messages may be different in different parts of the province.


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