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The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) issued a red ozone alert at 1:54 p.m. Saturday, July 25.

The red ozone alert is expected to be in effect until 11 p.m. July 25 for Door, Kenosha, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, and Sheboygan counties.

According to the WI DNR website, the advisory is being issued because of persistently elevated levels of ground-level ozone. The ground-level ozone is formed when pollution from things like power plants, manufacturing emissions, and vehicle exhausts react with hot temperatures, high humidity, and stagnant air.

The Air Quality Index is currently in or expected to soon be in the red level.

“The Air Quality Index is currently in or expected to soon be in the red level, which is considered unhealthy for everyone, especially people with lung disease including asthma, active adults and children,” according to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. “When a red advisory is issued for ozone, everyone should cut back or reschedule strenuous outside activities and people in sensitive groups should avoid any strenuous outside activity.”

Those who suffer from asthma and bronchitis need to pay attention to symptoms of respiratory distress, including shortness of breath, coughing, wheezing and discomfort when taking a breath.

Consult a physician if you have concerns or experience these symptoms.

“Ground level ozone can irritate the respiratory system, reduce lung function, aggravate asthma and chronic lung diseases, and, over time, cause permanent lung damage,” the DNR website notes.

Rating: 1 out of 5.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.