Fourth of July health advisory: Omaha, Lincoln health departments warn of air pollution from fireworks

Published: Jul. 2, 2021 at 3:25 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - The Douglas County Health Department is warning Omaha residents that smoke from fireworks can make breathing more difficult for people sensitive to air pollution.

The health department said in a news release that the greatest hazard is from Friday through Monday. People with asthma, other lung and heart diseases, children, the elderly, and pregnant women are especially vulnerable. Common symptoms include wheezing, nausea, fatigue, and feeling light-headed.

DCHD said the air pollution should dissipate by midday Monday.

The Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department issued a similar advisory for its area as well, noting that “relatively low wind speeds” were a contributing factor.

“Even a few hours of exposure to high levels of particle pollution may affect those with underlying health conditions,” Gary Bergstrom, Air Quality Program Supervisor with the LLCHD, said in the health department’s release.

It is legal to set off fireworks in Omaha from noon to 11 p.m. Friday through Sunday; and in Lincoln from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, and from 8 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. on Sunday.

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