Safety Tips For Periods Of Poor Air Quality

Courtesy of Carson Tahoe Health · 1 min read

As a result of the numerous recent wildland fires in the region (and with more almost certainly in store before the end of the wildfire season), Carson Tahoe Health is sharing several tips to stay safe in times of poor air quality.

With several summer fires roaring through Northern Nevada and air quality levels at times reaching a “moderate” to “unhealthy” smoke level, it’s important to be mindful of our surroundings and make small adjustments to our daily routine to stay safe.

Smoky skies over Carson Valley in 2015. Photo by Janey Pumphrey

Carson Tahoe Health recommends that community members:

  • Shelter in place, stay indoors
  • Keep hydrated to progress a cough and help prevent smoky air from settling in the lungs
  • Use air conditioning if possible, to help filter air throughout a house
  • Keep all doors and windows shut in both home and vehicles, if in a vehicle make sure the air conditioner is set to reticulate the air 
  • Humidifiers will help the air quality in a home or building
  • Masks are available for purchase at hardware stores and can really help filter the air and aid in comfort
  • At-risk individuals such as those with certain health conditions, young children, and the elderly should be extra mindful of these guidelines for optimal safety.

Seek emergency care if: 

  • You are having trouble breathing or can’t say more than four words without having to stop and take a breath
  • You experience excessive sweating
  • Your lips are turning blue 
  • You are confused or lose consciousness

Air quality is expected to remain poor throughout the week. For additional details on staying safe through heavy smoke conditions, visit

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