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Windy Ridge Fire Smoke Advisory

3/12/2007

Smoke from the Windy Ridge fire in the Anaheim Hills and City of Orange area may pose a health danger to individuals in Orange County, especially those in certain high-risk groups. In addition, high temperatures may also contribute to the public health danger.

“Among those who can be most directly affected by smoke exposure are individuals with heart and respiratory diseases, older adults, children and pregnant women,” said County Health Officer Dr. Eric Handler. “Air pollution levels from the fire can change rapidly, depending on weather conditions, so we recommend that individuals in these high-risk groups take precautions until the situation is over.”

Residents of areas affected by drifting smoke should limit outdoor activity and physical exertion. Other recommendations include:

  • Keep the windows and doors in your home closed, and use your air conditioner on the re-circulate mode, if available, to limit the intake of outdoor air and keep your home comfortable.
  • Contact your doctor if you have symptoms such as chest pain, chest tightness, shortness of breath, or severe fatigue. 
  •  Follow an asthma management plan, making sure those with asthma have at least a five-day supply of medication on hand.

The Santa Ana wind conditions contributing to the fire have also brought unseasonably warm temperatures. Recommendations to prevent heat related illnesses include:

  • Avoid unnecessary sun exposure and unnecessary exertion.
  • Drink plenty of water; don’t wait until you are thirsty.
  • Wear light, loose-fitting clothing.
  • Never leave children, elderly people or pets unattended in closed cars or other vehicles.
  • Check on those who are at high risk to make sure they are staying cool – including seniors who live alone, people with heart or lung disease, and young children.

For more information on the Windy Ridge Fire, visit the Orange County Fire Authority (OCFA) at http://www.ocfa.org/pages/ocfa.asp?filename=windyridge.asp