Forest Fires, Not Quite Out Of The Woods Yet

BC Forest Fires are raging right now and show no sign of letting up.

Most fires are happening in the interior of BC and in the Cariboo regions.

As of July 31, 2021, there have been 1266 fires with 60 new ones this week alone states the BC Wildfire Dashboard

BC Wildfire Dashboard
https://governmentofbc.maps.arcgis.com/apps/dashboards/f0ac328d88c74d07aa2ee385abe2a41b

Air Quality and our Chilliwack Community

Though at this point, the forest fires are mostly outside of our immediate region there is a considerable amount of ash and smoke filtering into our community.

Not only have we been seeing the effects of the forest fire smoke, but we have unfortunately experienced some large structural building fires that have added to the poor air quality in our city.

A large chicken barn was destroyed by fire and the next day a large apartment complex sadly went up in flames.

Effects of Forest Fire on health

What is Forest fire smoke?
Forest fire particulates
Forest Fire Particulates

Forest fire smoke is a form of air pollution that can affect your health.

Forest fire smoke contains very small particles that travel deep into your lungs when you inhale. These particles can cause irritation and inflammation, which can last until the air quality improves. Most symptoms are relatively mild, and can be managed without medical attention:

  • Sore throat
  • Eye irritation
  • Runny nose
  • Mild cough
  • Phlegm production
  • Wheezy breathing
  • Headaches

Some people may experience more severe symptoms and should seek prompt medical attention. Call HealthLink BC (8-1-1), talk to your primary care physician, or visit a walk-in clinic if you’re experiencing:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Severe cough
  • Dizziness
  • Chest pain
  • Heart palpitations

Protect yourself from wildfire smoke

Reduce your exposure to smoke and seek cleaner air:

  • Use a portable HEPA air cleaner to filter the air in one area of your home
  • Visit public spaces such as community centers, libraries, and shopping malls which tend to have cleaner, cooler indoor air
  • Take it easy on smoky days because the harder you breathe, the more smoke you inhale 
  • Drink lots of water to help reduce inflammation
  • If you are working outdoors, use an N95 respirator that has been properly fitted by occupational health and safety professionals.

People with pre-existing medical conditions should take extra precautions and should keep their rescue medications with them at all times. If you cannot get your symptoms under control, seek prompt medical attention.

Partial article proudly borrowed from CDC Center for Disease Control

http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/prevention-public-health/wildfire-smoke

Portable Air Cleaners or Scrubbers

Portable air cleaners or scrubbers plug into a regular wall socket and can easily be moved around from room to room.

Studies have shown that the use of these machines can reduce the amount of air bourne particulates by up to 80%

If you are experiencing poor air quality in your home or business and live in Chilliwack BC or surrounding areas, please call Insurance Restoration Pro and we can discuss if renting one or multiple HEPA air scrubbers will help you, and your family, or coworkers.

Call 604-316-7075 For Emergency Assistance

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