Forest Fire Fallouts lead to more Smokey Sky’s in Vancouver: Tips to maintain High Air Quality during this time
Unfortunately, a grey, opaque, and smokey sky seems to have become a regular occurrence for summers in Vancouver. 2017, 2018, and now in 2020, forest fires have become a serious reoccurring issue in Vancouver. Not only is there the obvious problems and risks of massive destruction on lands, homes, and families, but on the general public as a whole when it comes to air quality. The following Air Quality Index displays where good, healthy, unhealthy and very unhealthy numbers.
Air Quality Index
- Zero to 50: Good.
- 50 to 100: Moderate.
- 101 to 150: Unhealthy for some groups.
- 151 to 200: Unhealthy for everyone.
- 200 to 300: Very unhealthy.
Although forest fires are not occurring directly in BC, Vancouver’s air quality has been significantly impacted. For reference, on Monday September 14 2020, Vancouver’s air quality ranked at an astonishing 278 on the index. Burnaby was even more surprising at 293. Prolonged exposure to this type of air can cause significant health effects.
With this is mind, we’ve compiled our best tips to keep your air quality as good as possible during these times.
· Stay inside as much as possible! It may be for the best (for now anyways) to skip your outdoor activities. For example, give yourself an excuse to skip the outdoor run and watch a movie!
· Keep your windows closed! Instead, use your air conditioner if you have one (with the intake closed).
· If you are looking to go above beyond, the American Lung Association even recommends placing a damp towel under your doors or in other crevices where polluted air might leak in.
· When you go for a drive, turn the air conditioning on recirculate instead of opening the window.
· See if you can avoid activities that increase indoor air pollution. No burning candles, vacuuming, using gas stoves, or smoking cigarettes inside.