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What "Spare The Air" Actions Can I Take If A Smog Alert Is Called?

Reduce car use

Walk, cycle, take public transit or carpool.

  • Limit car trips by doing all your errands at once
  • Hold a teleconference instead of travelling to meetings

Drive clean

  • Keep your vehicle well tuned. A well maintained vehicle runs better and pollutes less
  • Shut the engine off, even for short stops. Idling for 10 seconds uses more fuel than restarting your engine
  • Drive at moderate speeds and check your tires regularly
  • Refuel your vehicle after sunset when air pollution levels are lower

Reduce your need for electricity

  • Turn off the lights
  • Turn down the air conditioner

By reducing the need for energy, not only do you save money, but you also reduce the demand for energy from oil and coal-fired generators which emit a significant amount of pollutants that contribute to smog.

Limit the use of small engine tools

  • Use manual tools or electric powered tools if necessary
  • Delay the use of gas powered equipment such as lawn mowers, chain saws and leaf blowers until after the smog episode

Use air-friendly products

  • Avoid using aerosol sprays and cleaners, oil-based paints and other chemical products

Don't light up on smog alert days

  • Avoid smoking
  • Avoid using the BBQ

The smoke generated from these activities will further deteriorate air quality.

What Can I Do To Protect My Family and Myself During Smog Alert Days?

Stay indoors

Children, the elderly and people with chronic heart and lung ailments should remain indoors on smog alert days. Sensitive people may experience eye, nose and throat irritation, chest discomfort, difficult breathing and possible lung damage.

Delay exercising

Avoid strenuous activity on smog alert days. Even healthy individuals can suffer adverse health effects on smog alert days therefore, if strenuous activities or exercise are unavoidable, plan them in the early morning and avoid high traffic areas.

Educate your children

  • Encourage your children to play outdoors early in the day when a smog alert has been called.
  • Choose play areas away from heavy traffic. Help them plan indoor activities for the late afternoon.
  • Talk to your kids about what they can do to help improve air quality.