Environment Canada has ended the Special Air Quality Statement for Moose Jaw, Pense, Craik, and Central Butte.

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The Special Air Quality Statement that was issued for the communities of Moose Jaw, Pense, Craik, and Central Butte will continue into Thursday.

Starting on Tuesday night into most of Wednesday, Moose Jaw was blanketed by a thick layer of smoke from forest fires burning in northern Saskatchewan and Alberta.  

By Wednesday afternoon, the majority of the smoke vacated the city with a lingering scent still in place. 

Environment Canada said on Thursday morning that conditions will begin to improve on Thursday, but the smoke is expected to stick around until Friday. 

On Thursday morning, the Saskatchewan Public Service Agency reported 24 active forest fires in the province, with all of them north of Saskatoon.  

Seven are listed as contained (the fire is not expected to grow), 12 have an ongoing assessment (the fire is being monitored), one is protecting property (fire is ongoing and action is focused on protecting property), and four are not contained (the fire is expected to grow in size).     

Winds will change direction on Friday, which will hopefully completely remove the smoke odour from the region.  

Though most of the smoke is removed, Environment Canada does want to remind residents of the risks associated with even the smallest trace.  

People with lung disease (such as asthma) or heart disease, older adults, children, pregnant people, and people who work outdoors are at higher risk of experiencing health effects caused by wildfire smoke. Speak with your healthcare provider about developing a management plan for wildfire smoke events and maintaining a supply of necessary medications at home and always carrying these medications with you during wildfire season.  

Stop or reduce your activity level if breathing becomes uncomfortable or you or someone in your care feel unwell. Contact your healthcare provider or local health authority if you develop severe symptoms or need advice.