07/13/2012 01:22 EDT | Updated 09/12/2012 05:12 EDT

Health advisory for Edmonton over smoky haze from northern forest fires

EDMONTON - Alberta Health Services has issued a precautionary smoke advisory for Edmonton due to a lingering haze from forest fires burning hundreds of kilometres away.

People with respiratory or heart conditions are being advised to protect themselves from potential health risks linked to current air conditions.

The advisory says even healthy people may experience irritation of the eyes and throat and possible shortness of breath.

A wildfire information officer says a wind blowing from the northwest is carrying smoke south from a fire near Zama City that has forced 200 people from their homes.

Health officials in Saskatchewan are also warning people about smoke from the Alberta fires, as well as from blazes in Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories.

Suggestions include reducing physical activity when outside or staying indoors with windows closed.