Air quality alert for Twin Cities metro in effect Friday

An air quality alert will be in effect for the Twin Cities metro area on Friday, according to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.

The alert will start at noon and last until 9 p.m. for east-central Minnesota, which includes the metro.

The MPCA states the air quality is expected to reach unhealthy levels for sensitive groups due to hot temperatures and low humidity. Light winds will also create an environment that could allow for nitrogen dioxide emissions and volatile organic compounds to form ozone. The concentration of ozone is expected to be the lowest in the morning and peak in the late afternoon.

People who may be impacted by the decreased air quality include: those with asthma or breathing conditions like COPD, children and teenagers, those doing extended heavy physical activity, and some who may have a genetic predisposition to ozone.

Symptoms can include difficulty breathing, coughing, throat soreness or unusual fatigue. People who may be more sensitive are asked to take precautions, such as keeping an inhaler nearby.

Air quality is expected to improve by Friday evening.