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Chicago First Alert Weather: Air quality worst in world due to wildfire smoke

Chicago's air quality currently worst in world
Chicago's air quality currently worst in world 01:25

CHICAGO (CBS) -- A northerly wind has pushed in another round of Canadian wildfire smoke into the area.

The air quality as of 4 p.m. Monday has dropped to the red, or unhealthy, category. The air quality in the Chicago area ranked the worst in the country late Monday.

As of 10 p.m., Chicago had an air quality index of 156 – the second worst in the world, as measured by IQ Air. Chicago ranked only behind Lahore, Pakistan, with 175; Jakarta, Indonesia came in third at 139.

On Tuesday morning, Chicago ranked No. 1 in the world for poor air. 

Throughout the evening, the thick smoke reduced visibility.

Areas to the north from Milwaukee to Green Bay are also affected.


 According to

People with heart or lung disease, older adults, children and teens – take any of these steps to reduce your exposure:

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

Everyone else – take any of these steps to reduce your exposure:

  • Choose less strenuous activities (like walking instead of running) so you don't breathe as hard.
  • Shorten the amount of time you are active outdoors.
  • Be active outdoors when air quality is better.

Smoky skies and poor air quality is expected to last through Tuesday. Models suggest this latest round of smoke could be significantly thicker than what we dealt with earlier this month.


Some improvement is expected by Wednesday morning.

Chicago First Alert Weather: Poor air quality next 24 hours 02:49
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