Better air quality information allows Hoosier to breathe easier

INDIANAPOLIS – Most people look at the day’s forecast to determine how to dress or whether to carry an umbrella, but knowing the air quality forecast can be just as important when planning the day.

That’s why the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) recently upgraded its SmogWatch Air Quality Forecast website,, to provide more straightforward information when an Air Quality Action Day (AQAD) is forecasted within Indiana.

IDEM Commissioner Brian Rockensuess

“This improved site allows Hoosiers to use one central resource for air quality information and data,” said IDEM Commissioner Brian Rockensuess. “We encourage all Hoosiers, especially those more sensitive to air quality conditions, to visit the new and sign up for alerts.”

Sample images from IDEM’s updated desktop version.

IDEM announces AQADs when agency meteorologists forecast ozone or fine particulate matter levels in Indiana that are at or above the U.S. EPA’s Air Quality Index (AQI) range for unhealthy for sensitive groups.

IDEM encourages Hoosiers to take the following actions on AQADs:

  • Take appropriate health precautions by reducing or avoiding exertion or heavy work outdoors;
  • Follow the pollution prevention tips for ozone and particulate matter provided by IDEM and
  • Follow advisories from appropriate authorities, including local health departments.

Website improvements include a new design and a modern look. Users can view air quality monitor readings and forecasts for the current and following day on one screen. Additionally, a colored banner appears whenever IDEM forecasts an AQAD. Pop-up windows with additional information keep the screen decluttered while allowing users access to more details. The new website is also mobile-friendly.

Starting this year, AQAD announcements will be easier to read. Hoosiers will be referred to a new fact sheet that contains expanded information and suggested actions everyone can take to improve air quality on AQADs and beyond. Hoosiers can sign up for air quality alerts and download the factsheet at or download the fact sheet directly at

IDEM forecasts Air Quality Action Days year-round for fine particulate matter and March 1-Oct. 31 for ozone. Other factors may influence overall air quality.