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Albuquerque issues ozone health alert

Drifting smoke from wildfires rolls into Albuquerque on Tuesday. (Jim Thompson/Albuquerque Journal)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Elevated ozone levels in Albuquerque on Tuesday prompted a health alert from the city.

People in Albuquerque and Bernalillo County who have respiratory conditions should avoid outdoor activities while ozone levels are high.

Ozone is a gas that forms when volatile organic compounds react with nitrogen oxide in sunlight.

Wildfire smoke and vehicle emissions are common sources of the pollutants that form ozone.

“People who are at higher risk for respiratory issues from ozone are also more susceptible to infection and severe health consequences from COVID-19,” reads a news release from the Albuquerque Air Quality Program. “Exposure to ozone can aggravate severity of COVID-19 symptoms, and infection with COVID-19 can increase health impacts from ozone exposure.”

The health alert expires at 8 p.m. on Tuesday.

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