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Posted: August 16, 2018

Notes from City Hall

Smoky Air and Your Health

Forest fire smoke is a complex and dynamic mixture of gasses and very small particles that can irritate the respiratory system and cause systemic inflammation. This will be an ongoing concern as air quality in affected areas may be variable for days or weeks.

Advice to minimize health effects:

  • If you have a chronic condition, have rescue medication on hand at all times and a plan to follow if your rescue medication cannot bring your condition under control.
  • Look for indoor environments that might be less smoky, such as shopping malls, community centre’s and libraries.
  • Avoid physical exertion because the amount of smoke you breathe increases as your breathing rate increases.
  • Try using a HEPA filter in your home furnace.
  • Keep hydrated as it helps your body deal with inflammation.
  • Keep N95 masks on hand to offer some protection if conditions become extreme.

If you are feeling unwell, remember you can call 811, a free-of-charge provincial health information and advice phone line available in British Columbia. If you or a loved one is experiencing a medical emergency, please call 911.

Emergency Grab and Go Kit

Build an emergency kit to grab and go in case of an evacuation or emergency. This easily accessible kit should contain: 2 litres of water per person per day, unperishable foods, can opener, flashlight and batteries, seasonal clothing, blankets, cell phone charger, pen and notepad, personal toiletries, maps, candles matches or a lighter, battery powered or wind-up radio, first aid kit, prescription medications, infant formula if needed, extra keys, cash in small bills, and a list of contact information. Be ready to go at a moment’s notice.

Prepare for the worst, and hope for the best! For more information.

Evacuation Notifications

The City of Kimberley Fire Department emergency evacuation plan describes the processes involved with evacuating our citizens and how people will be notified of evacuation orders. Evacuations may be extremely urgent, or we may have some lead time to prepare which will allow us to evacuate in stages.

When time permits, an evacuation alert may be issued. This means that it is important to be ready and pay attention to any media sources available. If the event escalates and an evacuation order is issued – it is time to go, ensuring you follow the directions of emergency management personnel.

In some cases, an evacuation order will come with little or no warning. Door to door notifications may occur along with emergency broadcasts. The city’s air horn may be activated, which in the event of an emergency will notify people in the downtown core.

To ensure that you are aware of any events that may be unfolding, it is important to follow the city’s and the Fire Department’s Facebook page, or other information sources.  It is imperative to share any information and spread the word to neighbours and family members that may not utilize social media.

It is vitally important to have your household emergency plan and emergency kit ready to go.  For your convenience, there are emergency plan and evacuation handouts available at City Hall.

For any questions regarding the city’s evacuation plan or how you can create your own at home, please call the Kimberley Fire Department at 250-427-4114.

City of Kimberley

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