Wildfire smoke is a mix of gases and fine particles from burning vegetation, building materials, and other materials. Wildfire smoke can make anyone sick. Even someone who is healthy can get sick if there is enough smoke in the air. Breathing in smoke can have immediate health effects, including:
- Trouble breathing normally
- Stinging eyes
- A scratchy throat
- Runny nose
- Irritated sinuses
- Wheezing and shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- An asthma attack
- Fast heartbeat
Older adults, pregnant women, children, and people with preexisting respiratory and heart conditions may be more likely to get sick if they breathe in wildfire smoke.
Created with images by Marcus Kauffman - "We were on our way to a lookout to photograph activity on the Jones Fire as part of our work for the fire management team. We heard radio traffic about a spot fire that has jumped the road we were traveling on. We drove up to find controlled chaos and very active fire. I jumped out with fire gear on and started shooting. I like this shot because it tells the whole story in one frame." • Hamish Weir - "Taken during the 2013 Blue Mountains bushfires."