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Today’s Al Roker shares shocking video from plane as smoke engulfs New York City

 The Today show host suffered huge delays

Al Roker smiling at the camera
8 June 2023
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Today's esteemed weatherman, Al Roker, is among the millions experiencing firsthand the issues arising from the wildfire smoke billowing from Canada, which is currently blanketing the United States. 

The thick haze has even permeated into major cities such as New York, creating an eerie atmosphere. The smoke has caused flight delays across the New York area, and Al recorded a video documenting his own experience. 

Looking out of his airplane window at LaGuardia Airport, the footage captures a disconcerting yellow hue in the sky. Al laments: "It is so hazy that I'm waiting to take off on a flight to Washington, D.C. They are stretching out the landings and takeoffs and we're still delayed and fifteenth for takeoff all because of the smoke that's out there." As the camera zooms into the window, he adds a succinct: "Yikes!"

WATCH: Al Roker shares shocking video of smoke engulfing New York

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On June 7, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) made an official announcement that the wildfire smoke has led to reduced visibility, causing the agency to slow traffic to and from New York City area airports. As the conditions continue to change rapidly, the FAA stated that it will continually adjust the volume of traffic.

According to NBC News, air quality advisories are impacting up to 100 million people in the United States, with areas in the Northeast, Midwest, and South particularly affected. 

In the Northeast, the poor air quality is primarily due to wildfire smoke from eastern Canada, where regions like Nova Scotia and Quebec have been severely affected by fires. Consequently, major cities, including New York City, Philadelphia, and Boston, have found themselves engulfed in a smoky haze.

Al Roker at the 2023 Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic at Liberty State Park on June 03, 2023 in Jersey City, New Jersey.© Getty
Al Roker at the 2023 Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic at Liberty State Park on June 03, 2023 in Jersey City, New Jersey.

Meanwhile, areas in the Midwest, South, and states like Texas and Illinois are grappling with air quality concerns due to ground-level ozone or smog.

The smoke's impact extends beyond causing mere visual disturbances and flight delays. Speaking to, Dr. Ronald Crystal, a pulmonologist and the chair of genetic medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine, explained the health risks associated with inhaling the smoke.

Today - Season 66© Getty Images
Al and Dylan have developed a close bond as meteorologists and co-workers

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“When we inhale, the particles (from smoke) stimulate our airways to become inflamed and not function normally,” stated Crystal, underscoring the potential health hazards presented by the wildfires.

Al Roker was seen walking with a stick © Instagram/Deborah Roberts
Al was seen walking with a stick

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