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

What can $4 million get you in real estate in Chilliwack vs. other places in B.C.?

A 78-acre property with a large house – or you could get a condo in Vancouver or an estate mansion in 100 Mile House

LETTER: Public safety ‘first and foremost consideration,’ says parole board

Board responding to article about Chilliwack halfway house

Widespread concerns spur UFV to halt international enrolment growth

New target hopes to limit international students to 20% of all enrolment to give time to ‘catch up’

Lights Tour 2019 takes everyone on a sparkly ride across Chilliwack

The annual list of addresses compiled by CADREB for the 2019 Tour of Homes is almost ready

UFV & other B.C. universities post $340 million worth of surpluses thanks to international student tuition

Students call for spending as international enrolment produces huge surpluses at many universities

‘Things haven’t changed enough:’ Ecole Polytechnique anniversary prompts reflection

Fourteen women were fatally shot by a gunman at the Montreal school on Dec. 6, 1989

Second warning on romaine lettuce from California region as another E. coli case reported

Two cases of E. coli have been reported in relation to the illness in the U.S.

Braille signs coming to TransLink bus stops in 2020

Transit authority says it’s the first to do so in Canada and the United States

Six B.C. municipalities accepted as interveners in Supreme Court of Canada carbon-pricing case

Victoria, Vancouver, Squamish, Richmond, Nelson and Rossland have intervener status

CUPE issues 72-hour strike notice for SkyTrain

Local 7000 release states ‘parties are still bargaining’, union will have job action plan by Saturday

Abbotsford man was ‘unintended victim’ of 2018 fatal shooting, police say

Jagvir Malhi, 19, was gunned down while on his way to university

Residents in B.C. city could face 133% tax hike in ‘worst case’ lawsuit outcome: report

An average home could see a tax increase of $2,164 in one year

Province wants to seize Langley property connected to drug lab

The Office of Civil Forfeiture is targeting a property on Fraser Highway

B.C. Transit finds 28 used fareboxes online, saves $300,000

‘Someone joked maybe we can buy used fareboxes on eBay,’ CEO says

Most Read