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Wildfire smoke in Bend and Sisters is unhealthy for sensitive groups
Bend, OR—The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality is advising people in Deschutes County to be aware of wildfire smoke over the weekend and to limit outdoor exercise, especially for sensitive populations including the young, the elderly and those with asthma.

The air quality monitor in Sisters showed unhealthy conditions Saturday morning, while the Bend monitor showed air quality was unhealthy for sensitive populations. Heavy smoke entered both communities in the early morning hours Saturday, leaving much of Deschutes County with poor air quality.

While residents can view current air quality conditions at http://www.deq.state.or.us/aqi/ , Oregon's monitoring network does not capture air quality conditions in all communities. For this reason, it's important for residents to gauge air quality conditions where they live and take appropriate actions to protect themselves.

View guidance from the Oregon Health Authority on children and outdoor activities during periods of poor air quality: https://apps.state.or.us/Forms/Served/le8815h.pdf

People can also take the following precautions:

• Be aware of smoke concentrations in your area and avoid the places with highest concentrations.
• Avoid strenuous outdoor activity in smoky conditions.
• If you have heart disease, asthma or other respiratory ailments, or are over 65, you have a higher risk of illness from wildfire smoke. Small children and pregnant women are also at increased risk. People in any of these groups might consider leaving the area until air quality improves.
• People suffering from asthma or other respiratory problems should follow their breathing management plans or contact their healthcare providers.

Remember, local smoke levels can rise and fall rapidly, depending on weather factors including wind direction.

Visit the Oregon Smoke Blog for more information: http://oregonsmoke.blogspot.com/

Contact: Greg Svelund, DEQ Public Affairs, svelund.greg@deq.state.or.us, 541-647-4194

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Environment & Energy
Health
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