Public Health issues Air Quality Advisory for Lassen County

The Lassen County Public Health Department is issuing an Air Quality Health Advisory to notify the public of poor air quality conditions through at least Aug. 11. This results from the Dixie Fire burning in Butte, Plumas and Lassen Counties around Lake Almanor, Chester and Mountain Meadows, impacting the Westwood, Clear Creek, Susanville, Lake Forest and surrounding areas.

Air quality is expected to vary greatly throughout the advisory period depending on fire behavior and weather conditions, with smoke settling in low areas at night and in the early mornings.

People with heart or lung disease, older adults, children and teens: Avoid physical activities outdoors.

Everyone else: Avoid strenuous outdoor activities, keep outdoor activities short, and consider moving physical activities indoors or rescheduling.

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Exposure to elevated PM2.5 (fine particulate matter in smoke) concentrations can result in eye and throat irritation, headaches, nausea, shortness of breath, congestion, coughing, impaired lung function and chest pain, especially among sensitive individuals such as the elderly, children, people with asthma, people with heart or lung conditions, pregnant women and anyone who is exercising or working hard outdoors. People who are affected by, or susceptible to COVID-19 may be at increased risk from wildfire smoke, due to cardiovascular symptoms or a compromised or suppressed immune system.

If you smell or see smoke around you, the following actions are recommended:
• Minimize outdoor activities even if you are healthy;
• Stay indoors with doors and windows closed as much as possible; run the air
conditioner on the “recirculate” setting if that is an option;
• People with asthma should follow their asthma management plan;
• People with heart disease, respiratory conditions or chronic health issues should
stay indoors;
• Contact your doctor if you have symptoms of cough, shortness of breath, chest pain,
or severe fatigue;
• Keep airways moist and stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water;
• Avoid breathing additional smoke, such as from cigarettes or barbecues.

Near real-time air quality conditions for Lassen County may be found www.lassenair.org. As you view the most recent data, take into consideration that conditions can change rapidly due to wind shifts; it is wise to monitor the smoke throughout the day and make plans accordingly. The smoke may be visible in satellite imagery, available via www.fire.airnow.gov

Additional information about air quality and protecting yourself from wildfire smoke can be found on the following websites:
https://fire.airnow.gov/
https://www.cdc.gov/air/wildfire-smoke/
https://fires.airfire.org/outlooks//EasternSierra https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7690/

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