NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – After bitter cold temperatures last week, the Tri-state area is thawing out.

Even though it was nice weather on Monday, the drastic change is causing some concern.

Lung specialist Dr. Len Horovitz says road salt is included in the chemicals that triggered an air quality alert this weekend.

“The sensitive groups are the very young, infants, and the elderly,” Dr. Len Horovitz explained.

”This can be dangerous if it goes on if you’re an asthmatic, have pulmonary disease… this can lead to hospitalization.”

CBS2’s Lonnie Quinn explains the 59-degree temperature swing from last week’s low to Monday’s high comes with some side effects.

“The chemicals become an issue because they were put down when it was really cold. Now we have all this warm air released by Mother Nature and what does warm air want to do, it wants to rise,” Quinn said.

“So now those chemicals which were never sucked into the ground because it almost became like a permafrost everything froze so quickly, now they get suspended as the air is rising.”

The warmth also prompted warnings to stay off the ice. CBS2 caught at least 11 people walking out onto the pond in Central Park Monday morning.

The Parks Department has rescue ladders by its lakes and ponds ready to go for first responders.

As tempting as it may be to spend time outside, this weather may not be as big a score as many think – especially until this alert subsides.

“It’s best not to exercise outdoors, if you have an air filter that’s a great thing,” Dr. Len Horovitz added.

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