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EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS OFFICE (EPO)

Trees in the woods that have been burned and a fire burning below them

Avoid Breathing Smoke

Smoke from wildfires can cause eye and respiratory irritation and some more serious reactions, including reduced lung function, bronchitis and making asthma symptoms worse. 

In areas where wildfires are still burning, people should stay indoors and reduce outdoor activity. People who must be outdoors for long periods, in areas with heavy smoke, or where ash is disturbed, may want to wear an N95 respirator mask. Those with existing respiratory, lung or heart conditions should limit their exposure by staying indoors. Since wearing a respirator can make it harder to breathe, those with lung or heart conditions should check with their doctor before using one. 

Using air conditioners that recirculate indoor air may be helpful in reducing smoke from entering the home, as most central air conditioners are designed by default to re­circulate indoor air. Be sure to check the setting if your system has setting for both "outdoor air" and "re-circulate" to be sure the system is set to "re-circulate." It is recommended that people follow local guidance regarding air quality and health and safety messages. 
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