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WILDFIRE WATCH

Air quality reaches dangerous levels; officials advise staying indoors

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HAMILTON COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -

Wildfire smoke can travel hundreds of miles and cause a variety of health risks, its why officials are on high alert.

The Chattanooga Hamilton county Air Pollution Control Bureau issued a code red which means it is unhealthy to everyone in the area.

Under the advisory, it recommends staying indoors, but if you do have to be outside doctors say wearing a mask can help.

"People who are in outside landscaping or do outside work, if they can wear a respirator that would be good or at least have a mask on,” Dr. Patrick Koo, Pulmonologist said.

However, it's not bulletproof not all carbon and fine smoke particles are filtered out.

"The mask doesn't completely block out all particular matter, but it does reduce it to the point where it probably doesn't affect that person that much,” Dr. Koo added.

Doctor Koo said any layer of protection is better than none.

Under a code red, doctors say everyone should avoid heavy outdoor activity especially at-risk groups.

Officials advise paying close attention to air quality reports in your area as conditions change frequently.

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