Health experts give advice as smoke lingers over NW side

Compost fire continues putting out smoke

TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Two stubborn fires are burning in the Tucson area and one of them, a compost fire, has been going for almost a week as of Friday, June 26

It’s been putting out a lot of smoke across the northwest side of the city.

Unfortunately, officials with the Pima County Department of Environmental Quality said people need to be prepared for this to go on for several more days.

Many residents are heading inside to escape the smoke, but they're still feeling the effects.

It's too hot to turn the A/C off, so what do you do?

Health experts said there are a few things you can try to improve the situation if your neighborhood is getting a lot of smoke.

  • Use damp towels. Place them under doors and in windows to capture particulates from entering the house.
  • Replace HVAC filters more frequently.
  • Keep windows and doors closed.
  • If you go outside, reduce your level of exertion.
  • If you’re running air conditioning, make sure the fresh air intake is closed. This will help make sure you’re not pulling smoke into your home.
  • Don't smoke inside or burn candles.
  • Postpone vacuuming. It can stir up dust particles in your home.

If you're at high risk, health experts recommend removing yourself on a temporary basis.

“Maybe just pack a lunch and go to a friend for a little while. Go to a family member that’s not being impacted by the smoke. That may help just relieve you for a little while,” said Beth Gorman, senior program manager for Pima County Department of Environmental Quality.

There's no official word on when this fire will be out, but crews are working as fast as they can.

Fire officials said these burning piles are so thick with brush, water is pretty ineffective on putting out the flames.

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