While no air pollution can possibly compare to the smog choking Moscow right now, people in the U.S. are reminded that they can check the air pollution for "code red" alerts in their own city on this site. Code red indicates that ozone or particle pollution levels are high enough to cause health problems.
Though frequent cold fronts moving across the Midwest, Great Lakes and Northeast have kept levels low, a major heatwave is building in the nation's midsection and will push to the east this week. Air quality alerts have been posted for dozens of cities, including Washington, DC, Atlanta, Philadelphia and Cincinnati.
A few tips from CNN meteorologist Jacqui Jeras -
1. Avoid being outdoors when bad air levels are at their highest, which is typically between 3-6p.m.
2. Don't exercise outdoors during that time.
3. Combine trips and carpool, and avoid fueling up if possible (the gasoline fumes add to the pollution) and don't idle your vehicle.
If you ever need an excuse not to mow the lawn, try this: "Honey, I can't mow the lawn this afternoon, it's bad for my lungs."