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Officials to monitor air quality during New Year’s

State health officials are planning to monitor Hawaii’s air quality this coming weekend because of an expected heavy use of fireworks.

The Department of Health’s Clean Air Branch also will compare its findings with national ambient air quality standards.

Use of legal and illegal fireworks is particularly pervasive in Hawaii during New Year’s celebrations.

A new state law allows local governments to ban fireworks, a step Honolulu County has taken. But the city ordinance takes effect next year.

Health officials say fireworks smoke consists of particulate matter that can aggravate conditions such as asthma, emphysema, and chronic bronchitis.

They say those who suffer from those conditions may want to take precautions.

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