The sun glows a sickly red over Langley City, the result of the haze from wildfires. Dan Ferguson Langley Times

Smoky skies trap B.C. man inside for days

Air quality warning issued for Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley

For the last five days, retired Safeway clerk Wendell Nunes has been trapped inside his Langley home, unable to go outdoors because of the smoke in the air from B.C. wildfires.

“This is the worst I’ve seen,” said the 76-year-old Nunes, who has had Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) for more than 20 years and requires oxygen 24 hours a day.

“It limits me,” Nunes said.

“If I was to go out, my walking about would stop (after a short time) because taking a breath is difficult.”

A Metro Vancouver air quality advisory has been in place for the past week for the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley.

A statement issued Monday by the regional authority warned of “high concentrations of fine particulate matter” due to smoke from the fires and said the elevated levels were “expected to persist until there is a change in fire or weather conditions.”

People with chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes, lung or heart disease, as well as infants and the elderly, were advised to avoid strenuous exercise or long amounts of time outside until the smoke lifts.

Drive BC is warning drivers to be extra observant and keep their headlights and taillights on while driving.

Usually, Nunes, the treasurer of the Langley Better Breathers support group for people with respiratory illness, gets outside a minimum of three times a week, to attend the group’s exercise class at the Timms community centre in Langley City.

Even staying indoors, he said he can feel the effects of the smoke.

“Monday was really bad,” Nunes said.

“Sleep, you don’t get a lot of. You cough.”

He said family and friends of people with respiratory problems should understand that it is especially hard for them to function when the air quality drops.

“Just be supportive,” he said.

READ MORE: Kids, seniors at risk as smoke from distant fires hangs over parts of B.C.

READ MORE: Lower Mainland air quality to hit ‘extreme risk’



dan.ferguson@langleytimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Work begins to remove cargo from grounded Haida Gwaii barge and fishing lodge

Westcoast Resorts’ Hippa Lodge broke from its moorings and ran aground early this month

Tlell Farmers’ Market is open every Sunday until Thanksgiving

The Observer mistook the final day for the farmers market – don’t miss the harvest!

Masset dodges empty-ballot bullet

After an extended deadline, Masset now has enough candidates for council

Sunny skies for Terry Fox Run

Queen Charlotte and Masset runs raise nearly $3,000 for cancer research

Masset short on council candidates, other communities okay

Nominations deadline for Masset council extended to 4 p.m. Monday

Canning sockeye by hand in North Coast B.C.

Arnie Nagy teaches the Northern View how to can salmon in Prince Rupert

Kim agrees to dismantle main nuke site if US takes steps too

Kim promised to accept international inspectors to monitor the closing of a key missile test site and launch pad and to visit Seoul soon.

Dozens speak at Vancouver hearing that could see duplexes replace single homes

The city clerk says 73 people signed up to speak at the hearing that began early Tuesday evening and adjourned hours later with 34 speakers still waiting.

North Carolina gov pleads with storm evacuees to be patient

The death toll rose to at least 37 in three states Tuesday, with 27 fatalities in North Carolina.

North and South Korea say they plan to bid for 2032 Olympics

Moon and Kim announced a sweeping set of agreements including a vow to work together to host the Summer Olympics in 2032.

Russia’s reinstatement after doping scandal goes to a vote

The World Anti-Doping Agency is due to vote Thursday Sept. 20, 2018, on possible reinstatement of Russia.

Ontario wins stay on ruling that struck down council-cutting plan

The province had argued the stay was necessary to eliminate uncertainty surrounding the Oct. 22 vote, and the Court of Appeal agreed.

B.C. cannabis producer Tilray hits at $20-billion high as stock price explodes

This is the first export of a cannabis product from a Canadian company to the U.S.

NDP tax increases adding up for B.C. residents: study

Carole James says Fraser Institute analysis ignores tax relief

Most Read