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While most of Knox County’s air quality measures in the green or good range today, the Knox County Health Department is advising that areas near the downtown-area mulch fire are likely still being impacted by unhealthy air due to smoke. While the impact area changes due to weather conditions and wind direction, health officials said Wednesday that if you can smell smoke, the air quality is unhealthy.

Although rain has helped improve the situation occurring just northeast of our campus, people should be cautious about prolonged or heavy outdoor physical activity until the air quality improves. Faculty and staff experiencing symptoms should consult their immediate supervisor and their physician. Students experiencing symptoms should contact Student Health Service or their personal, family physician.

The Knox County Health Department follows the Environmental Protection Agency guidelines for air quality status. Visit to view the latest information.

The Office of Environmental Health and Safety will continue to monitor the situation and advise the campus of any changes to normal operations. If you have questions, call EHS at 865-974-5084.