NEWS RELEASE--FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Date: July 16, 2014
Contact: Niki Forbing-Orr
Public Information Officer
Wildfires cause unhealthy air quality in central Idaho mountains
Outdoor activities should be limited in those areas
Air quality in Garden Valley and the Idaho City area has reached an “Unhealthy” designation, and the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare’s Division of Public Health is alerting people to limit outdoor activities. Because of wildfires and weather patterns, air quality conditions are not expected to significantly improve through this week.
People exposed to smoke may experience symptoms such as coughing and shortness of breath. Older adults, infants, children and people with medical conditions such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and heart disease are often more affected. People who use inhalers for asthma or other conditions should keep them close at hand. Everyone experiencing uncontrolled coughing, wheezing, choking, or difficulty breathing after moving back indoors should seek medical treatment.
To reduce your exposure to smoke and protect your health, public health officials advise:
Not all areas of the state have air quality monitors, so people are encouraged to be cautious if visibility is affected because of smoke and particulates from wildfires. If visibility is reduced to less than eight miles, sensitive groups should limit activity. If visibility is reduced to less than three miles, air quality is considered unhealthy for everyone.
For more complete information about wildfires in your area, daily updates on air quality conditions and more resources, visit the Idaho Smoke Information Blog.