Where there’s wildfire smoke, there are health risks

Wildfires this summer have at times negatively affected air quality and caused health risks for certain segments of the population, including the elderly, health authorities say.
People with heart or lung disease, or those with respiratory issues such as asthma, colds or flu, are most at risk from the smoke of wildfires. Children, the elderly and pregnant women also need to take precautions.
The Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department, among other agencies, urges the public to pay attention to updated air quality reports and health warnings from local news outlets and public health agencies.
Those at risk should avoid physical exertion if smoke is in the air. If advised to stay indoors, keep indoor air as clean as possible and keep windows and doors closed. Follow your doctor’s directions about taking medicine, and follow asthma or other management plans. Call your health care provider if symptoms worsen. If it is too hot and air conditioning is not available, consider leaving the area.
Bans on all types of outdoor fires for recreation or other purposes remain in effect in Pierce, King and Kitsap counties and throughout the Puget Sound region.