PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A Code Orange Air Quality Action Day has been issued for the Pittsburgh area Tuesday.

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection says a combination of sunny skies and high temperatures will likely contribute to 8-hour average concentrations of ozone in the “code orange” range on Tuesday.

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It’ll be in effect for Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington and Westmoreland counties. Southeastern counties are also affected.

It comes a day after fireworks filled the sky in Pittsburgh and oppressive heat moved in.

“In Western Pennsylvania, we are used to bad air quality,” said AHN’s Dr. Brian Lamb.

The alert means that the air will be unhealthy for sensitive groups like the elderly, young children and people with respiratory problems like asthma and bronchitis. They’re encouraged to limit outdoor activities.

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“Get in the air condition because it’s going to irritate your lungs less,” said Dr. Lamb.

He also says kids should limit how much time they’ll be outside in the heat: “Make them take breaks, come inside.”

Residents are encouraged to drive less, limit engine idling, refuel vehicles after dusk and conserve electricity.

“Physically it bothers me, but I don’t pay attention to the air alert because what are you going to do? I like to golf, I will golf tomorrow. I’m down here at the Pirate game tonight. At my age, I figure I’ll wheeze my way through it,” said Lower Burrell resident Bill Thomehy.

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“If you have a chance to get out and you can see the blue sky, the clouds and the wind — take advantage. I mean how long do you have?” said Marion Damick, a Squirrel Hill resident who turns 96 next month.

Jennifer Borrasso