UPDATE 1:30 p.m.—State officials are warning about continued elevated smoke levels across Connecticut, with Gov. Ned Lamont encouraging residents to stay inside if possible.

The CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) expects smoke from wildfires over Quebec to continue to linger throughout the day on Thursday, June 8, resulting in elevated fine particulate matter (PM2.5) levels. These measurements are expected to exceed “unhealthy” levels for the entire state as the smoke slowly disperses throughout the day.

“If you don’t need to be outside, particularly if you have respiratory issues or other similar ailments, it is strongly encouraged to stay indoors to the greatest extent possible until air quality improves,” Lamont said in a CT-DEEP press release.

“What we’re seeing this week is dramatic, unhealthy, and unprecedented,” DEEP Commissioner Katie Dykes said. “Air pollution from Canadian wildfires, made worse by climate change, is now impacting the air we breathe for a fourth straight day. We recommend that people follow guidance from the Connecticut Department of Public Health to protect themselves from experiencing symptoms from elevated air pollution.”

WHS Girls Lax State Semifinal Game Postponed Again

Wilton High School Athletic Director Bobby Rushton told GMW that the CIAC state championshionship girls varsity lacrosse semifinal match against New Canaan has been postponed for a second day. The matchup is now scheduled for Friday, June 9 at 7 p.m. in New Canaan.

Thursday, June 8, 11 a.m. (Original Story)—Wilton’s Emergency Management Director, Fire Chief Jim Blanchfield, is cautioning Wilton residents about continued air quality concerns. He said the CT Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has issued another Air Quality Action Day for Fairfield County until midnight tonight. 

An Air Quality Action Day means that fine particulates within the region may approach or exceed unhealthy standards.

Wilton’s AQI of 180 at 11 a.m. on June 8, 2023. Credit: airnow.gov

Current air quality as of 11 a.m. registered at 180 AQI.

In his morning EMD email to town officials, Blanchfield noted that an “unhealthy” level is when the Air Quality Index values are between 151 and 200. That’s at a point when health impacts can be felt by the wider population, but members of “sensitive groups” may experience more serious health effects.

“Unhealthy air quality is particularly tough for those with asthma, heart disease and other respiratory ailments, as well as children and seniors. Make time to check in with your family and neighbors who fall into those categories until the air quality returns to healthier levels,” Blanchfield said.

He added that he’s coordinating with other Town departments where work is necessary outside, and limiting any potential issues as best as possible. “Bottom line, be smart and be safe,” Blanchfield added.

GOOD Morning Wilton will continue to update today as alerts are issued or further information is available.

For additional information, please visit http://www.ct.gov/deep/aqi or you may call the Air Quality Index Hotline at 800-249-1234.