Life on Florida’s West Coast

Sunny and Wheezy in Tampa

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On top of waking up with a cold yesterday, I woke up with a lot of wheezing today. And it’s no wonder. The Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County issued an advisory health statement, saying elevated levels of the pollutant Ozone has caused the air quality index to elevate to a value of 90.

Active children and adults and people with respiratory disease such as asthma should limit prolonged outdoor exertion for the next 24 to 48 hours. That would be me, on both counts. And Gigi.

Air quality index values from 51 to 100 are thought to be “moderate” on a 0-500 point scale. Ozone forms when pollutants emitted by cars, power plants and other sources react chemically in the presence of sunlight. And in the Tampa area, we have no shortage of sunlight! People with respiratory problems are most vulnerable, but even healthy people who are active outdoors can be affected when ozone levels are high.

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