2020 Wildfire Season marked the worst air quality Spokane has ever had.
According to the Spokane Regional Clean Air Agency, Spokane reached an “Air Quality Index” of 499 the morning of September 13, 2020.
To put this in perspective, the “Air Quality Index” only goes up to 500.
As hazardous smoke from wildfires plunged Spokane county into the purple zone. Dr. Bob Lutz, Spokane County health officer encouraged all community members to refrain from non-essential travel and for businesses to support employees working from home.
This is because smoke can hurt your eyes, irritate your respiratory system, and worsen chronic heart and lung diseases.
While not everyone has the same sensitivity to wildfire smoke, it’s still a good idea to avoid breathing smoke if you can help it.
How to Tell if Wildfire Smoke is Affecting You
High concentrations of smoke and exposure to wildfire smoke over a long period of time can trigger a range of symptoms.
- Burning Eyes
- Runny Nose
- Cough and/or Phlegm
- Wheezing and/or Difficulty Breathing
Ways to Decrease Risk from Wildfire Smoke
- Check Spokane Air Quality Report
- Listen and watch for news or health warnings about smoke.
- Check the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Air Quality Index (AQI) report for Spokane.
- Keep indoor air as clean as possible
How to Keep Indoors Air Clean
When the air quality index reaches unhealthy – hazardous air quality levels it is best to stay indoors and focus on keeping the air you breathe indoors clean.
Tips from the Washington State Department of Health for improving indoor air quality during wildfire smoke events:
- Upgrade Filters on HVAC Units
- Portable Air Cleaners
- Close air intakes, when outside air is in the unhealthy category.
- Close all windows and minimize use of outside doors, when air is in the hazardous category.
- Use a damp mop with microfiber cloths
- Use high efficiency (HEPA) vacuums or vacuums with high efficiency filter bags.
- Reduce all sources of indoor air pollutants, including use of aerosols, fragrances, gas, propane or wood-burning stoves, smoking, etc.
- Take advantage of periods of improved air quality (such as during rain or shifts in wind) to use natural ventilation like opening windows to flush-out the building.
Spokane Air Scrubber Installation
Schedule to have an air scrubber installed by a professional electrician in Spokane county.
The air scrubber will be mounted above your HVAC’s air handler and unlike bulky air purifiers it is not visible inside your home. A standard unit will cover up to 3,000 square feet and begins working immediately.