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Illinois is under an Air Quality Alert on Friday

Road users cross a junction in Berlin, Germany
Michael Sohn
/
AP file
Ground-level ozone is formed when emissions of nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds from vehicles, power plants, and other industrial sources, react in the presence of sunlight.

Those with asthma or other respiratory or pulmonary disorders should limit their time outside Friday, with the entire state under an Air Quality Alert.

The Air Quality Alert comes from the Illinois EPA. Alerts are declared when weather conditions are such that widespread ozone and or particulate levels are expected to be at or above the unhealthy for sensitive groups category of the air quality index. Warm, dry and sunny weather along with intensifying drought conditions are major contributing factors for ozone formation in Illinois.

Active children and adults especially people with pulmonary or respiratory disease such as asthma should limit prolonged outdoor activity. All residents should keep cool and limit physical activity when air quality is low. Possible symptoms related to sensitive groups impacted by low air quality include coughing or shortness of breath.

Because air quality can change from day to day, the Illinois EPA provides daily air quality forecasts based on the Air Quality Index (AQI) for fourteen sectors throughout Illinois.

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Ryan Denham is the digital content director for WGLT.