Smoke haze returns to the region

By Morgan Dyer

A thick, smoky haze has once again returned to the region and is expected to linger for quite some time.

Bureau of Meteorology senior meteorologist Dean Stewart said poor visibility had been recorded at Shepparton Airport.

“It's rated at 6 km which means that’s how far ahead you can see until you begin to struggle to make out objects,” Mr Stewart said.

“It’s expected to hang around right through the day, overnight and even into tomorrow.”

The ongoing bushfires in eastern Victoria, alongside warm temperatures and winds, are to blame for the blanket of smoke.

However, locals may receive slight relief from the smog with rain and thunderstorms on the cards for tomorrow.

Mr Stewart said Shepparton was expected to reach a top of 37°C today.

“Overnight Shepparton will reach a low of 21 with a top of 33 degrees tomorrow,” he said.

“There’s a chance of shower or storm about tomorrow also, which could bring around 6 mm of rain in some parts of the region.

“The ingredients for a severe storm are there, but at this stage it is still unknown if they will occur.”

It's hoped forecast rain may provide some relief. Picture: Rodney Braithwaite

If the expected rain does fall it will help clear the atmosphere and give temporary relief from the haze.

People will be more sensitive to smoke if they have a heart or lung condition (including asthma), are pregnant or are aged over 65. Children younger than 15 are also more sensitive to the effects of breathing in smoke.

If you are sensitive to smoke you should limit prolonged or heavy physical activity. Where possible you should try to stay indoors.

If you have a heart or lung conditions you should take your medication as prescribed by your doctor. If you are asthmatic, follow your asthma plan and carry reliever medication with you.

Anyone experiencing wheezing, chest tightness and difficulty breathing should call triple zero (000). If you have concerns about your health, you should seek medical advice or call Nurse on Call on 1300 606 024.