Air quality warning

Air quality in Deschutes County affected by wildfire smoke

A public service announcement from the Deschutes County Board of County Commissioners

Deschutes County Health Services is closely monitoring air quality as conditions may worsen due to smoke from numerous wildfires across Oregon. Smoke levels can rise and fall depending on weather factors such as wind direction.

“We encourage people to monitor air quality conditions when planning activities,” said Tom Kuhn, Community Health Manager at Deschutes County Health Services. “Older adults, young children, and people with asthma, respiratory, or heart conditions are very susceptible to the impacts of wildfire smoke.” To monitor air quality, check the Department of Environmental Quality’s Air Quality Index to see real-time air monitoring data from monitors placed around Oregon (
The following precautions should be taken to avoid health problems during hot, smoky conditions:

  • Avoid outdoor activities, especially vigorous activities, when air quality is unhealthy and hazardous. Those with heart or lung problems, as well as young children, are especially vulnerable.
  • Protect yourself by staying indoors, closing all windows and doors. Use recirculating air conditioning systems in your home or car if available.
  • Reduce other sources of indoor air pollution such as burning cigarettes and candles; using gas, propane, and wood burning stoves and furnaces; cooking; and vacuuming.
  • Individuals with heart disease or lung diseases such as asthma should follow their health care provider’s advice about prevention and treatment of symptoms.

Other wildfire smoke resources:

The Oregon Health Authority’s wildfire web page,

For more information on using the visibility index during wildfires, visit

For information on smoke and wildfires in Oregon, visit


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