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Smoky haze prompts calls to 911

Washington County fire departments have received several calls about smokey haze around the Portland area. It appears that winds have pushed smoke from wildfires in Eastern Oregon toward Portland.

Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue and Hillsboro Fire Department are asking that people only call 911 if they see a column of smoke, not just a general haze.

If you are worried about air quality, check out DEQ's website: www.deq.state.or.us/aqi/index.aspx

According to DEQ, residents can take the following precautions to avoid breathing problems or other symptoms from smoke, should air quality worsen:

• Be aware of smoke concentrations in your area and avoid the places with highest concentrations.

• You can avoid smoke by staying indoors, closing all windows and doors and using an air filter that removes very fine particulate matter.

• Avoid strenuous outdoor activity in smoky conditions.

• If you have heart disease, asthma or other lung disease, or are over 65 years of age, you have a higher risk of illness from wildfire smoke. Small children and pregnant women are also at increased risk. People suffering from asthma or other respiratory problems should follow their breathing management plans or contact their healthcare providers.

The National Weather Service expects the winds to turn westerly on Sunday, pushing the smoke out by Monday