PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) – The state has issued an air quality alert for the Pittsburgh area, saying clear, warm conditions will spike levels of a key smog component.

With the sun pounding on his head and sweat running down his back, Tom Geubtner was working the stones in the Allegheny County Courthouse courtyard on Tuesday afternoon.

“Every once in a while you take a walk in the shade and just cool down a little bit,” said Geubtner, a bricklayer for the county. “That’s about all you can do.”

Hot is one thing, but the health folks say the conditions make air ozone laden and unhealthy. So we’re under a Code Orange Alert.

“Which is an advisory for young people, the elderly and people who may have asthma, or emphysema, to maybe stay indoors,” says John Poister, the spokesperson for the Department of Environmental Protection.

It’s also a call for action by all of us.

“Try to eliminate any unnecessary trips in their automobile,” says Jim Thompson, of the Allegheny County Health Department.

Watch the latest forecast:

Also, don’t fill up your tank in the middle of the day.

“The vapors coming out of the gas tank contribute to ground level ozone,” says Poister.

Turn up the thermostat in your house to 75 or 76 so the power plants don’t work so hard.

Also, experts say to try hold off mowing your lawn until after 7 p.m.

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