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Code Red: Smoke shuts down Alexandria outdoor pools and moves summer camp activities indoors

Smokey conditions in Alexandria on 6/29 (staff photo by James Cullum)

Alexandrians are being urged to stay indoors due to hazardous air qualityagain.

A Code Red Air Quality Health Advisory has been issued for the region today, warning of detrimental health impacts due to poor air quality, with outdoor pools and other activities impacted.

As per the issued advisory, the air quality today could pose a serious health risk, particularly to those with breathing and heart ailments, children, and older adults. Residents are encouraged to avoid strenuous outdoor activities, shorten their duration if necessary, or shift them indoors.

The Department of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Activities (RPCA) has announced that all outdoor pools will be closed for the day. All summer camp activities have been moved indoors today.

In a release, the City of Alexandria urged locals to:

  • Avoid strenuous outdoor activities
  • Keep outdoor activities short
  • Consider moving physical activities indoors or rescheduling them

The release said tomorrow’s (Friday) air quality is projected to be Code Orange — meaning it may be unhealthy for sensitive groups.

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To celebrate Air Quality Awareness Week (May 6-10, 2024), Clean Air Partners is working with A Few Cool Hardware Stores to exchange DC, Maryland and Virginia residents’ gas-powered lawnmowers, trimmers, and leaf blowers at select Ace Hardware locations in the region. DMV residents who turn in their gas-powered lawn tools will receive a FREE Ego Power+ replacement including batteries and chargers, while supplies last.

Compared to gas, electric lawn equipment can reduce emissions, noise pollution, health risks and maintenance costs and time. The program aims to remove about a hundred gas-powered polluting tools from yards in the greater Baltimore-Washington region.

The exchanges will take place the weekends of May 17-19, 2024, and May 31-June 2, 2024, at A Few Cool Hardware Stores network of employee-owned Ace Hardware stores in the DC and Baltimore metro areas. To participate and get your free Ego Power+ lawn tool, sign up at https://qrco.de/CAPExchange to reserve your tool and select your trade-in date and location.

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