Stay safe while working in smoky air
The Pacific Northwest farm and forestry workforce face the threat of overlapping exposures during the late harvest season. Essential work during the Covid-19 pandemic overlaps with extreme temperatures during summer heat waves, as well as wildfire smoke.
Exposure to wildfire smoke is associated with respiratory conditions and can exacerbate underlying asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. A 2018 student-led PNASH research study found that nearly 3 out of 4 farmworkers in the Eastern Washington town of Mattawa reported being exposed to an unhealthy amount of wildfire smoke on the job, and 100% of respondents reported that they had little or no information about how to protect themselves from smoke.