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In this paper we assess the interference caused by external (uncontrolled) traffic sources upon real-time flows in IEEE 802.11-based mesh networks. Through a set of simulations, we assess the impact of external traffic sources by analyzing the end-to-end delay, frame loss ratio and deadline miss ratio as performance metrics for a set of real-time flows. We infer the maximum interfering traffic load that can be supported so that it does not negatively impact upon the behavior of the real-time flows. We highlight that there is a critical threshold load for the network above which the network can no longer reliably support real-time flows.