Smog alert issued for Wednesday

The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission issues a smog alert for Wednesday

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) -An air quality alert will be in effect for Central Ohio Wednesday.

It is the second such time this year that the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission has issued an alert. The first came on May 8.

There were no air quality alerts in 2014, and have been no unhealthy particle days since 2010.

The key ingredient in smog is ozone, which is more prevalent during warmer months.

Wednesday’s smog alert is for at risk groups: children, senior citizens and anyone suffering from lung diseases.

Sheila Hatfield said her mother suffers during the summer months.

“She’s got COPD. I just make her stay in the house and do nothing with the air conditioning, which she doesn’t like,” Hatfield told NBC4.

Smog irritates the lining of the lungs, triggering asthma attacks and other breathing problems.

It can make every day activities like exercise or even playing sports, difficult.

Wednesday’s forecast is calling for temperature of 90 degrees, but it will feel more like 95 with humidity.

On these days, the phones at LifeCare Alliance ring off the hook with people looking for fans to keep cool.

“A fan can cool a room’s temperature by at least ten degrees,” said President and CEO Chuck Gehring. “That can be the difference between staying comfortable in your own home or an emergency room visit.”

Since March, LifeCare Alliance has distributed more than 800 fans to the elderly, even to families with small children with health problems.

“We normally go through at least two thousand in a year. And we’re down to very few in inventory,” said Gehring.

Sheila Hatfield will not only keep a close eye on her mom, but also her neighbors.

“I live in a neighborhood with a lot of older people. And I call and check on them to make sure they are okay.”

You can donate a fan to LifeCare Alliance by dropping one off at any fire station in Franklin, Madison and Marion counties. Call their fan hotline, (614) 437-2870, if you or someone you know needs a fan.

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