The overpowering smoke smell has covered the skies of most of Northwestern Ontario due to the multiple large forest fires in the region.

The Dryden Regional Health Centre has placed the centre in a Code Grey due to the recent smoke hazard across the region.

“It's a measure we put in place to ensure that our patients and staff were protecting their health as best we can, and making sure that we have the best possible air quality here in our facility,” said Logan Waller Communications and Board Liaison for the Dryden Regional Health Centre

“We're at a partial air exclusion and we're continuing to monitor that situation and will prepare to ramp up as the situation evolves because as we know it can change quite quickly,” added Waller

Risks of too much contact with wildfire smoke include runny noses, scratchy throat, irritated sinuses, and headaches. Smoke inhalation could cause asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) exacerbation, bronchitis, pneumonia, and cardiovascular outcomes.

According to, yesterday Dryden’s Air Quality Index (AQI), was at 154 which is classified as unhealthy.

As of yesterday, Aviation, Forest Fire, and Emergency Services of the Northwest Fire Region reported 79 active fires in the region. Thirty fires are not under control, three fires are being held, twenty-nine are being observed and seventeen fires are under control.

Eighteen new fires were confirmed in the northwest region by late afternoon yesterday.

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