As wildfires continue to rage across the country, Seattle’s air quality continues to remain in a worsening state.
With COVID-19 an ongoing factor, it’s more important than ever to stay safe from smoke and fire while preventing the spread of disease.
According to the Washington State Department of Health (WSDOT), breathing in wildfire smoke can cause symptoms that are relatively minor, such as eye, nose, and throat irritation, and also more dangerous symptoms like wheezing, coughing, and shortness of breath.
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They recommend that the “best way to protect yourself from smoky air is to stay inside and keep your indoor air clean by improving filtration and creating a clean air room in your home.”
Here’s how WSDOT suggests Washingtonians reduce the intake of smoke into homes:
- Close windows and doors when it’s smoky outside, and open windows to let in fresh air during times when there’s better air quality outside.
- Set air conditioners to re-circulate.
- Avoid burning candles/incense, smoking, broiling/frying foods, and vacuuming, as these can add to indoor pollution.
- Use a portable air cleaner with a HEPA filter – Air Cleaner Information for Consumers – California Air Resources Board.
- Build your own box fan filter – WA Department of Ecology’s video on how to make your own clean air fan.
Those in need of shelter from the smoke can stay at the King County smoke shelter located at 1045 6th Avenue South in SoDo, which is projected to stay open until Wednesday, September 16.