Here in western WA, prevailing wind is typically off the ocean or south from British Columbia. Today, there's a windstorm blowing smoke *west* across the Cascades.

Brace yourselves, folks. This is going to be nasty.

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Info on protecting yourselves from wildfire smoke: wasmoke.blogspot.com/2020/09/p

Many of the things you can do are completely free! Please do them. In the middle of a pandemic is the worst time to also have your lungs in harm's way from other causes.

Anybody remember the official advice from the W years that in the event of a chemical weapon being released in a population center, the best thing one could do (rather than going out in it to try and flee) was to close all doors & windows and seal the edges with duct tape? It was widely mocked at the time.

I didn't recall that said advice existed until a couple hours afterwards, but I sealed up a bunch of drafts in my apartment with duct tape on the idea that if the household HEPA air purifiers weren't keeping up, then I needed to do more to keep the outdoors out. Lo and behold, I no longer need to wear an N95 mask inside my home to prevent repeated asthma attacks.

And, well, it occurs to me that smoke is a prototypical chemical agent--airborne fine particulates and noxious gases that are easily moved around by the wind. So it looks like that at least kinda functions the way we were told.

tl;dr: If it sounds stupid but it works, it isn't stupid.
And may nature quit trying to choke us soon.

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@Verdigris wait. Why did that seem stupid? O.o

Modern windows form a good enough seal (in the UK at least) that we literally have to have extra vents put in to stop us suffocating or drowning in condensation.

@Jacel Might be what @Canageek and I talked about above (a sealed building only being protection for people far enough away from the source), or it might just be that 'something so simple couldn't possibly work'. The idea that a more complicated setup is better leads to safety theatre, but it turns out to be challenging to get people to understand--or maybe to accept--that simplicity means fewer things can go wrong.

@Verdigris @Jacel again, I'm somewhat skeptical it would work at all, due to the fact we're talking about particles that are in a lot of cases several orders of magnitude smaller, or our actual gases instead of particles. like this is working because you're forcing all the air to go through your HVAC system, which has filters. if the filters won't touch the gas it doesn't matter how the air goes into the home. it also won't do anything for buildings that don't have HVAC or any sort of filtration.

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