The Klickitat County Department of Emergency Management (DEM) issued a statement this evening letting residents of Klickitat County know that there are no active wildfires in our county at this time. The heavy wildfire smoke is coming from Oregon fires.

The smoke can make it difficult to breathe even for those with no underlying lung conditions, the DEM warned. The smoke is a mixture of gases and particles from the burning debris. It can irritate eyes and respiratory system and worsen underlying health conditions such as heart and lung diseases. Some of the immediate health effects can include coughing, trouble breathing, burning eyes, scratchy throat, runny nose, irritated sinuses, chest pain, headaches, asthma attack, and fast heartbeat as stated by the CDC.

See the links below provided by the DEM for additional information and guidance on how to protect yourself:

Oregon Smoke Blog for the latest on fires and air quality across the state of Washington and Oregon

Dept. of Environmental Quality 5-3-1 Visibility Index for estimating smoke levels via visual observation

CDC fact sheet​ about the health threats from wildfire smoke

Video #1—Overview of Indoor Air Quality During Wildfire Smoke

Video #2—Reducing smoke particles throughout your entire home (HVAC system)

Video #3—Setting up a clean air room in your home (HEPA portable air cleaners & DIY box fans)