Poor air quality could be an issue on Monday for sensitive groups in the state.
State Department of Energy and Environmental Protection officials cautioned residents about the potential of elevated ground-level ozone. Ground level or "bad" ozone primarily occurs during warm summer days.
Strong sunshine causes chemical reactions of air pollutants emitted from motor vehicles, power plants and industry and household activities, forming ozone. Warmer weather can bring high levels of ground level ozone (O3) and fine particulate matter (PM2.5).
These two air pollutants pose serious health risks - especially to young children, the elderly, adults who are active outdoors, and people with respiratory disease.
Unhealthy concentrations of ground level ozone can cause or make worse a variety of respiratory and other health problems including breathing difficulty, coughing, and throat irritation and worsen asthma episodes.
Anyone can be affected by ozone; particularly, sensitive groups that include children, elderly, people with respiratory disease such as asthma, and even healthy adults who are very active outdoors.
Peak ozone levels occur between 12 p.m. and 8 p.m. Officials urged people to get their activity or exercise in before or after these times to minimize health effects.
To reduce the presence of "bad" ozone, DEEP recommended carpooling, driving less and never idling a vehicle.
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