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Haze over Midlands is from wildfires

Jul 4, 2011 2:27:00 PM - thestate.com
That haze that’s been hanging over the Midlands for the past 48 hours could be with us for a few more days, officials say. That is until a front or rain pushes in, which is unlikely for awhile, or the wind changes direction.

“We can’t seem to get a break,” said Chris Liscinsky of the National Weather Service. “Our problem is no matter which way the wind blows, it’s picking up smoke from somewhere and pushing it in to the area.”

Liscinsky said while the majority of what we’re seeing is caused by “persistent Southerly winds” picking up smoke from the wildfire in Georgia’s Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, some of it is also coming from a fire burning in Eastern North Carolina, which had smoke to blow out to sea then move back inland. As of Monday, both fires continued to burn, while firefighters worked around the clock to get blazes contained.

What that means for Midlands residents who may particularly sensitive to air quality, is they may be spending the remainder of their holiday and part of the week indoors.

The Department of Health and Environmental Control issued an advisory Sunday, reporting winds as blowing smoke northward into western and central counties of the state, including Aiken, Barnwell, Orangeburg, Lexington, Richland and Greenwood counties.

USA, South Carolina: (Latest Stories)