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Tiam
7-30-13, 9:39pm
Southern Oregon is on fire. The fires are probably about 60 miles away from me but there is no air. It's a thick haze of smoke, right in front of you, smelling of burning wood. The sun is barely visible and blood red. Air conditions are considered hazardous right now. Can't leave the house. Been days and will probably continue to be many more days.:(:(

https://fbcdn-sphotos-d-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc1/p480x480/995447_416019561848500_1060670679_n.jpg

puglogic
7-30-13, 9:41pm
So sorry, Tiam.

We went through this earlier this year and most of last summer....really awful.

Hang in there.

Tiam
7-30-13, 9:43pm
So sorry, Tiam.

We went through this earlier this year and most of last summer....really awful.

Hang in there.

It's not unusual here, fires are an annual event. Plus I grew up in California. This one is probably the worst I've ever been in.

https://fbcdn-sphotos-e-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc1/480027_416417661808690_1439581701_n.jpg

Tussiemussies
7-30-13, 9:48pm
So very sorry Tiam. It must be very hard to live like this, without fresh air to breathe. Is there any chance you could get an air purifier for the house? We had bought one for different reasons and it really purifies the air. Hope this will be over soon for everyone's sake.

Tiam
7-30-13, 9:50pm
Hmmmm, hadn't thought of that.

Tiam
7-30-13, 11:43pm
Another example
https://sphotos-b-sjc.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/p480x480/1002307_10152094231704815_1582361730_n.jpg

ApatheticNoMore
7-31-13, 1:17am
I've heard air conditioners can help clean the air somewhat (provided they aren't just blowing in even more smoke). They did seem to work (but I may have had central air then). Although my first advise is always leave the area temporarily, but that assumes that's actually physically possible.

Tiam
7-31-13, 1:38am
I've heard air conditioners can help clean the air somewhat (provided they aren't just blowing in even more smoke). They did seem to work (but I may have had central air then). Although my first advise is always leave the area temporarily, but that assumes that's actually physically possible.


These fires can burn for weeks. Leaving isn't an option. The nearest escape would be to go to the coast. I imagine that campgrounds and motels are doing record business.

ToomuchStuff
7-31-13, 3:56am
I am sorry for your loss, whoever discovers Tiam's body, since there is NO AIR. At least since there is NO AIR, there is no fire, as it requires oxygen.

CathyA
7-31-13, 6:38am
I am sorry for your loss, whoever discovers Tiam's body, since there is NO AIR. At least since there is NO AIR, there is no fire, as it requires oxygen.

???

Be safe Tiam.

Rosemary
7-31-13, 7:18am
We lived in Phoenix when a nearby mountain had a forest fire. The smoke lingered over the Phx valley for many days... it is very unpleasant. Hope they soon get the OR fires under control and that you can get some fresh air! Perhaps the wind will change and blow the smoke away?

razz
7-31-13, 9:16am
That does sound really scary. I think that TMS was being a little spoofy about the actual phrasing of words but let it go it was meant kindly.

Gregg
7-31-13, 9:20am
Be safe Tiam! We went through similar conditions in CO a few times. It sucks. The air purifier is a great idea, we had 3 of them that we moved from bedrooms at night to living areas during the day when it got really thick. The ones we used were called "Ionic Breeze" and were sold at Sharper Image. Not sure if they are still available since SI is out of business, but they worked great. I'm sure any unit you could find will be helpful. If you have central air you can get filters that are much finer than the standard fiberglass units. There may be some benefit to that, but it would probably still smell smoky...

reader99
7-31-13, 1:46pm
When we had wildfires here in 1989 (FL) I had towels stuffed along all the cracks under the doors and windows and ran the HEPA air cleaner at its top speed. That did help quite a bit.

Tiam
7-31-13, 2:42pm
???

Be safe Tiam.


I think that was just sardonic humor. I'm in no physical danger. Just ...cough....choking.

Tiam
7-31-13, 2:44pm
We lived in Phoenix when a nearby mountain had a forest fire. The smoke lingered over the Phx valley for many days... it is very unpleasant. Hope they soon get the OR fires under control and that you can get some fresh air! Perhaps the wind will change and blow the smoke away?


We have a funny little valley here. Last year (or the year before) the valley filled with smoke. There were no local fires. Where was the smoke coming from? Forest Fires in Siberia!!! A major inversion layer and lack of wind or rain makes it just sit here.

Tiam
7-31-13, 2:46pm
https://fbcdn-sphotos-h-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-frc3/1074188_10201673013697015_590271031_o.jpg

CathyA
7-31-13, 3:09pm
How ironic Tiam..........now it should say "Its the climate change, stupid!" ;)

Are people wearing masks when they go out? They should be.

Tiam
7-31-13, 6:59pm
How ironic Tiam..........now it should say "Its the climate change, stupid!" ;)

Are people wearing masks when they go out? They should be.

Some are. But to be honest, air purifiers, filters and masks are sold out.

SiouzQ.
7-31-13, 7:46pm
Wow, that looks so extreme and dangerous (I just live in boring ol' Michigan)! Be careful; I can't imagine having to conduct your daily life in those conditions...

Tiam
8-1-13, 12:06am
I tried wearing a particulate mask. It's like breathing through a heavy scarf. You start to feel like you're not getting any oxygen either way.

reader99
8-1-13, 7:35am
Some are. But to be honest, air purifiers, filters and masks are sold out.

How about online, like Amazon?

Tiam
8-1-13, 5:44pm
https://fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-prn1/1094850_10152103082478312_609316043_n.jpg

CathyA
8-1-13, 8:07pm
All different kinds of masks! Nice group of girls. Are you in the pic, Tiam?

Tiam
8-1-13, 11:38pm
All different kinds of masks! Nice group of girls. Are you in the pic, Tiam?

No, actually I live about 30 miles south of this town. The town is closer to the fire, but my town has worse smoke and unhealthy air due to the nature of the fire. I just picked it because it illustrates pretty well, the issues. They are saying this is going to be months. Probably won't clear till late October. My exercise regime is all outside as I don't go to a gym or own exercise equipment. I haven't done anything or gone out to do more than water the lawn for a week. And looking forward to two months more of this. I was getting my blood pressure down, and hopefully increasing my good cholesterol, building endurance and feeling good. Now I don't know what to do. I did a bit of weights and bands inside. In fact I'm a bit sore! I confess I'm not good at sticking with indoor house exercise. And I have a very bad knee and need low impact exercise.

CathyA
8-2-13, 7:23am
How frustrating it must be for you Tiam. And I hope the people in your area don't end up with some pulmonary problems because of the smoke.

Do you have an exercise bike? I tried using our exercise bike for my knees (very little meniscus left), and it caused me to have sciatica problems. I ended up buying a "Pedler", which is just pedals.
I put it beside the bed and use it there, where the bed is very soft on my behind! It isn't really aerobic exercise, but its great for keeping your knees working better.
How about some exercise videos to work with?

Kestrel
8-2-13, 11:19am
We lived in Medford at one time, but no fires then. Great area to live!

Have been through similar many times as well, so really sympathize with you all. DH fought fires every summer when he worked for the Forest Service and Park Service (tho firefighting wasn't his primary job; when there are fires, everyone who can or wants to, goes). Please keep the firefighters in your thoughts and prayers -- that's one heck of a scary job (as DH only told me after-the-fact; but I "knew" anyway) ... they put their lives on the line to save the forests ... and the urban interface. Always remember Smokey Bear -- my hero!

reader99
8-3-13, 8:33am
No, actually I live about 30 miles south of this town. The town is closer to the fire, but my town has worse smoke and unhealthy air due to the nature of the fire. I just picked it because it illustrates pretty well, the issues. They are saying this is going to be months. Probably won't clear till late October. My exercise regime is all outside as I don't go to a gym or own exercise equipment. I haven't done anything or gone out to do more than water the lawn for a week. And looking forward to two months more of this. I was getting my blood pressure down, and hopefully increasing my good cholesterol, building endurance and feeling good. Now I don't know what to do. I did a bit of weights and bands inside. In fact I'm a bit sore! I confess I'm not good at sticking with indoor house exercise. And I have a very bad knee and need low impact exercise.

My indoor exercise had improved since I discovered YouTube. They have enough for something different every day. I like the seated ones, I can do them in between what I'm doing online, or during TV commercials.

larknm
8-5-13, 7:40pm
To combat sensitivities the re-emereged big time from smoke from our fires this summer, I used a mask and got used to breathing with it on, went on a bland diet of lamb (first time in years), carrots, white rice, and yams, prescribed by my environmental illness doctor. For four days. Then all symptoms have gone except for burning tip of tongue if I eat anything remotely not bland. I would LOVE to know the brands of all the air purifiers you all like--I prefer less expensive and with a filter that doesn't cost $100 to replace every year (hopefully one I could wash myself).

RosieTR
8-13-13, 11:14pm
My sympathies, Tiam! We've only had one bad smoky day this summer, so I have been very thankful. What worked last summer: shutting up the house, going to places that had A/C and filtration systems (work, movies, etc), making sure the car settings were for recirc and not outside air. If you have A/C, running that with a good filter may work. Evap coolers, obviously, exacerbate the problem. If there's an indoor pool anywhere, that may be an exercise option, if you can swing the entrance fee. Or maybe you can talk to some local gyms and see if they'll do a summer membership. As for the masks, they are probably not worth the $. Surgical masks are useless and N95s are designed to filter stuff like pet dander, not stuff in smoke. You would need a respirator (this according to DH who had to do firefighting training in the Navy). So, save your $ there. Some people try a damp bandanna around their face, which probably doesn't do a whole lot for the smoke but at least cools you off!
We were lucky in that the wind usually blew the smoke away in the afternoon and early evening when we could do some stuff outside and open up the house, then it would wake me about 2am when the wind shifted and the swamp cooler started funneling the smoke in. I'm not sure what the wind patterns are where you are, though in a low valley and with smoke on more than one side, it sounds like you aren't getting a break. Sending rain thoughts your way!

Tiam
8-14-13, 1:54am
We are blessed at the moment. There has been some relief. For weeks I stayed inside as the air quality readings read hazardous, and dangerous. Now we are at yellow which is moderate. We can see stars at night! The sun in the day! The actual sky! It's still smokey, but I'm able to get back on the bike and do some bike rides early in the days. I've still got a chesty cough and feel headachey and lethargic, but it's improving. The day I originated this OP the air was seriously as if you fireplace had back up into your house. Only it was the entire world. I'm crossing my fingers it won't get like that again!

razz
8-14-13, 6:51am
We are blessed at the moment. There has been some relief. For weeks I stayed inside as the air quality readings read hazardous, and dangerous. Now we are at yellow which is moderate. We can see stars at night! The sun in the day! The actual sky! It's still smokey, but I'm able to get back on the bike and do some bike rides early in the days. I've still got a chesty cough and feel headachey and lethargic, but it's improving. The day I originated this OP the air was seriously as if you fireplace had back up into your house. Only it was the entire world. I'm crossing my fingers it won't get like that again!

Tiam, this sounds so awful to experience. You are dealing with a serious situation but I don't have a good grasp on it as yet. John Mauldin had a reference to this issue in his weekly newsletter.

A quote:
The New Normal — Some Expensive Consequences [by] one of the world's preeminent climatologists Evelyn Browning Gariss

Excerpted from The Browning Newsletter, August 2013, Vol. 38, No. 8

SUMMARY

From the Western wildfires to the Great Lakes, from insurance to transportation, real estate values, and fuel, the "New Normal" is having a major negative impact on certain sectors of the North American economy.

Long-term planning, using 20+ years of data, is biased towards climate conditions that no longer exist. If long-term planners look at 60-80 years of climate data, they should make different and better decisions.

Climate change is affecting the bottom line. The changes in two long-term trends are raising costs and cutting profits for a number of industries. As long as each bad year is accepted as a one-off, rather than the New Normal, these "unexpected" losses will continue.

• THE ATLANTIC – The waters in the Gulf Stream are flowing faster, carrying more hot tropical waters along US shores.

• THE PACIFIC – The Pacific has a 50-60 year cycle, called the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), that shifts warmer waters through the Northern Pacific. Starting in 1999 and tipping in 2006, the PDO has shifted cooler waters to US shores. Although occasionally interrupted by a warm El Niņo, this creates drier Western weather. [Figure 1]

History shows that both trends will last another 15 to 20 years. We are starting to see the impact of these changes.

Tiam
8-14-13, 10:46am
Today as of 7.00 AM the air quality is at 79.(pollutant particulates) That's considered in the moderate zone. To be in the good or safe zone, it needs to be below 51. 79 isn't so bad, about the level of a mildly polluted city. Right now, though, by the air quality charts, our little neck of the woods is higher than most places except Central Los Angeles. It will probably rise as the day goes on. The good side is that it is no longer hazardous.

Tussiemussies
8-14-13, 2:22pm
I'm so glad that this condition is improving for you, just wish it was to the point where your chest and lethargic feeling would heal.

RosieTR
8-14-13, 11:14pm
I'm so glad that this condition is improving for you, just wish it was to the point where your chest and lethargic feeling would heal.

The good part is that unless you have a major asthma attack or something, the effects are generally short term. Firefighters get stuff like smokers do, but ordinary people who have to deal with a smoky summer generally recover fairly soon after the smoke goes away. Even at the Los Angeles level you're talking about, if you can see the visibility is pretty low (less than a mile) you're likely to have any of: cough, sore throat, headache, shortness of breath, maybe trouble sleeping. Basically feel like you're coming down with a cold all the time, which sucks. Sending rain thoughts your way!

Tussiemussies
8-14-13, 11:28pm
The good part is that unless you have a major asthma attack or something, the effects are generally short term. Firefighters get stuff like smokers do, but ordinary people who have to deal with a smoky summer generally recover fairly soon after the smoke goes away. Even at the Los Angeles level you're talking about, if you can see the visibility is pretty low (less than a mile) you're likely to have any of: cough, sore throat, headache, shortness of breath, maybe trouble sleeping. Basically feel like you're coming down with a cold all the time, which sucks. Sending rain thoughts your way!

That is really terrible for people having to live in those conditions. Yes, sending rain thoughts your way...

Tiam
8-1-15, 1:15am
And once again. Night time temperature is near 90 degrees and we have this:https://scontent-sjc2-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xtf1/v/t1.0-9/11836873_10154109800353312_7344013337216085028_n.j pg?oh=80591f1054b8fa7bad3a2f75f87e358d&oe=564200D4

Float On
8-1-15, 8:36am
Sorry you are going through that again. The Canada fires earlier this summer, we saw the results down here in SW MO - hazy skies, red sun.

rodeosweetheart
8-1-15, 9:13am
Tiam, Lark, I have had wonderful results with this cheap one from Target, also available on Amazon, by Holmes:
http://www.amazon.com/Holmes-HEPA-Tower-Purifier-HAP424-U/dp/B0000DK35C

I have extreme asthma and can actually sleep for more than 2 hours if this one is on.

Do upgrade to the most expensive filter, not the one it comes with--Target had them right there on the shelf and they are labeled for smoke.

Also bought ones for 39 dollars for the bedrooms.

We used to have a very expensive one from Sharper Image and this works as well or better, in my experience.

CathyA
8-1-15, 9:14am
So sorry Tiam!!

Zoe Girl
8-1-15, 9:47am
i live in colorado, i remember when i lived in boulder in college it was like this, the whole valley filled with smoke and just settled. it all stank and was hard to breath. it didn't last as long as you are expecting however so that sounds really difficult. things like exercise when you were getting into the habit of it, dang it that stinks.

i was on my drive home late last night and i saw a cigarette thrown out of a car window, that has caused fires before here! it made me really aware that people don't know that. my kids all smoke and i have trained them to at least throw away anything in the car as much as i hate smoking overall

Tiam
8-1-15, 3:29pm
I can guarantee every air filter is sold out in town. Perhaps I'll buy one for the future when they are available again.

ApatheticNoMore
8-1-15, 5:24pm
I can guarantee every air filter is sold out in town. Perhaps I'll buy one for the future when they are available again.

sounds sensible. Be prepared! :) Also running A/C (whether or not it's needed for heat) will filter the outside air some, they've even recommended it when there's been smoke here. Like I've said the smoke at a certain point seems to begin to effect your very sanity, just the being unable to really fulfill the most basic biological function of BREATHING, just takes a heavy toll. Leave the area for a vacation for a few days is best (I took a sick day when there was smoke - not even a vacation just a day trip AWAY - people at work guessed it was really the smoke and that I wasn't really sick - well yes ... couldn't deny it - but it was as bad as any cold and several hours of breathing real air again helped).

Sorry it's burning again, when I say I"m glad to be in Cali comparatively .... uh ... The new normal, heck in a handbasket, we're all doomed really.

Teacher Terry
8-1-15, 5:54pm
We live in northern Nevada & have had this problem many times. 2 years ago I was stuck in the house for a month because of my asthma. We have been lucky this summer so far.

Gardenarian
8-2-15, 12:59am
Hey Tiam,

So sorry you've been going through this all week, and with this intense heat as well.

The smoke just hit Ashland today and it looks like your photos. Bad stuff.

I'm leaving for Europe on Monday, so luckily will only have one more day of the smoke. I sure hope they get the fires under control soon.