DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — The Miami Valley is once again under an Air Quality Alert Tuesday, and as in the “South Park” movie: Blame Canada.

Smoke from the wildfires that are currently raging across Canada has settled into our area, elevating the level of fine particulate matter in the air and raising the risk for those prone to respiratory or cardiac issues, such as seniors or people with asthma.

The AQA will apply to Clark, Darke, Greene, Miami, Montgomery, and Preble counties.

An Air Quality Index of 50 or less signifies air with little or no pollution and minimal risk. An AQI of 51-100 signifies that while the air is still OK, there’s some risk.

Tuesday’s forecast AQI? 105.

“Any reading at 101 or higher is considered ‘unhealthy for sensitive groups,’ ” writes the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission. “Older adults, children, and anyone with respiratory or cardiac diseases should reduce prolonged time outdoors or heavy exertion.”

Though much of the cause of the AQA is beyond our control, the MVRPC offers tips to help minimize the severity:

  • Don’t drive if you can. With vehicle emissions being responsible for about half of ground-level ozone, try to reduce your impact by carpooling, taking mass transit, walking or riding a bike.
  • Hold off on filling up your car until the evening. By waiting until 8 p.m. or until the AQA expires, you’ll keep the fuel vapors from forming smog.
  • Wait until evening to mow your lawn. Again, reduces smog.