Smoky skies hold health hazard for all

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 7:14 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Smoke from fires in the Plumas, Tahoe and Eldorado national forests have settled into our area leaving us with an air quality index that’s hovered between levels considered *unhealthy* ... or *very unhealthy* ... all week.

Those most at risk are people with compromised respiratory systems.

“Anyone with asthma, COPD, emphysema, anyone that’s on oxygen chronically should simply avoid the smoke. There really isn’t a more complex answer than that, says Dr. Jeff Bacon of Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center’s Pulmonary and Critical Care unit.”

But, he adds that doesn’t mean the rest of us should ignore the danger. There’s little new about the standard advice: Stay inside when you can. Turn off any unit--swamp cooler, house fan, bringing outside air in and avoid exercise.

The tiny particles in the smoke can, he says, cause lasting damage to even young, healthy lungs.

One more thing: We’re all wearing masks these days, or should be, but unless they’re of the N95 variety don’t expect them to protect you from the smoke.

Copyright 2020 KOLO. All rights reserved.

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