Wildfires Decrease Air Quality

 

Due to the fires, the Uintah Basin has been experiencing poor air quality. Smoke from wildfires could cause high concentrations of particulates (air pollutants) in populated areas. If smoke becomes thick, people with heart or respiratory ailments should reduce physical exertion and outdoor activities, if at all possible. If physical exertion and outdoor activity are required, individuals should consider respiratory protective measures to filter particulates.

 

“Anyone with a chronic heart or respiratory ailments are most at risk,” according to TriCounty Medical Advisor, Dr. Karl Breitenbach. “These individuals should take appropriate precautions and measures to protect themselves from unnecessary exposure to wildfire pollutants in order to protect their health.”  These precautions include staying indoors if at all possible and wearing a disposable respirator or dust mask when outdoors.

 

TriCounty Health Department (TCHD) is offering assistance by providing masks to those who are affected by the smoke in the air. Respiratory protective masks are available at the following locations:

 

TCHD Roosevelt

  409 South 200 East

TCHD Vernal

133 South 500 East

Duchesne High School

155 West Main Street

 

“With the fire at only 2 percent containment, we anticipate that the poor air quality may exist for quite some time throughout the Uintah Basin. While these conditions linger, we encourage all people to avoid unnecessary exposure to the smoke and particulate pollutants,” says Jordan Mathis, Director of TriCounty Health Department.  

 

To monitor the quality of air in the Uintah Basin, we encourage residents to visit ubair.usu.edu or air.utah.gov.

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