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Sep-25-2009 00:42printcomments

Wildfire Smoke Impacts Southern and Central Oregon

Smoke from Southern Oregon Wildfires Prompting Air Quality Concern.

File photo of wildfire smoke
File photo of wildfire smoke

(BEND, Ore.) - Concern about smoke and haze in low-lying areas of Central and Eastern Oregon, including Crater Lake, Bend, Redmond, Burns, Klamath and surrounding communities, is prompting the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality to alert residents to the possible associated dangers.

Residents can take protective measures to mitigate breathing problems or other symptoms from smoke.

Fire officials say elevated smoke levels have also been detected as far inland as Sweet Home and Lyons near the Willamette Valley.

Smoke concentrations from active fires in southern and central Oregon, reached the "moderate" category overnight Tuesday on the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality's Wildfire Air Quality Rating Scale (WAQR) in Bend.

Levels climbed to "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups" (children, elderly and people who suffer from asthma or other lung or heart conditions) in the Klamath Falls area. Levels are currently at "Unhealthy" in the Crater Lake Area.

Visit the Wildfire Air Quality Rating Scale:

Area residents can check DEQ's Air Quality Index through the weekend for real-time air quality and health index readings.

Visit DEQ's Air Quality Index: .

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