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Quebec is known for its beautiful green spaces, but the beauty of its forests is often threatened by forest fires. These fires pose a threat to biodiversity, local communities, and public health. Forest fire smoke contains toxic substances like carbon monoxide, particulate matter, and aldehydes that can cause respiratory illnesses, allergies, and skin irritations. It's crucial for people living near fire-affected areas to know how to protect themselves. In this article, we'll share 5 simple ways to protect yourself from forest fire smoke.
- Stay indoors: The easiest and most obvious way to protect yourself from smoke is to stay indoors as much as possible. Make sure your doors and windows are closed to prevent smoke from entering your home. Use air conditioners and air filters to maintain indoor air quality.
- Wear a mask: If you have to go outside, wear a well-fitting mask to reduce inhalation of smoke. Make sure the mask you wear is of good quality and is airtight.
- Avoid exercising outdoors: When air quality is poor, it's advised to avoid exercising outdoors. If you need to exercise, do it in an air-conditioned gym.
- Stay informed: Stay informed of fire alerts and follow the advice of the national or local weather service on air quality forecasts and evacuation if necessary.
- Create a safe space: If you're a homeowner, create a safe space for you and your family by removing dead branches and trees near your home. Make sure you have the right home insurance in place and have a clear evacuation plan in case you need to leave.
Our hearts go out to those affected by the fires. Unfortunately, the smoke is also affecting the majority of the population. Stay safe and take care of yourself!