Pima County Government Logo
  • Increase font size
  • Decrease font size
  • Print
  • RSS
  • DEQ offers health guide for fire season

    Jun 28, 2016 | Read More News
    Share this page
    High summer temperatures and low moisture mean wildfire season is upon us. Even small wildfires can have a big impact on air quality. 

    SmokeThe Pima County Department of Environmental Quality, with help from the U.S. EPA and the New Mexico Department of Health, has developed a system for residents to determine the potential health risks of nearby wildfires. 

    Read the guide here.

    If a wildfire is close, first estimate its distance from your location and the impact the smoke has on visibility then decide if it’s best to remain indoors or safe to go outside. To determine smoke levels based on the distance you can see, face away from the sun and pick landmarks at 1, 5 and 10 miles away. 

    Depending on visibility, consider taking appropriate action such as minimizing or eliminating outdoor activity. People with heart issues, asthma or other respiratory ailments face the most smoke-related potential health risks. Those older than 65 years old, expecting mothers and young children also should take extra precaution. 

    As a rule of thumb, if you can smell smoke, you are breathing smoke.

    Return to Pima County FYI