Health officials promote masks as precautions when outdoors

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PARKERSBURG, W.Va.(WTAP)- We are in day 3 of the Ames fire and residents are really feeling the effects of the smoke.

Hospitals like Camden Clark in Parkersburg stated they have treated less than 10 patients resulting from the smoke.

Health officials have been stressing to the public to stay indoors if possible. But for people that work out doors, like the valets at Camden Clark, they have to take other precautions like wearing masks.

We've already seen schools, businesses, and churches all over the Mid-Ohio Valley taking precautions today by either closing down or delaying events they had planned.

For those that cannot take off work, health officials' state wearing a mask may not filter out the smell but will prevent you from breathing particles from the air.

Dr. Abiy Kelil, a Pulmonologist doctor at Camden Clark, explains why it is important to wear a mask in these conditions. ”Even though you don't see the particles in the air or the smoke, you can still have it in the area and in the air when we take a deep breath. So particles can go, can irritate your airways, can cause difficulties in breathing or a spasm, and wheezing and a cough."

Masks can be bought at grocery stores or hardware stores and are just an extra precaution for those heading outdoors.

Again, medical officials stress to stay indoors especially if you have current health conditions and with the smoke expected to stay around…purchasing a mask may be useful for later this week.

We should also point out that at this point officials with the DEP and the EPA have not relayed any information about the air quality from the smoke coming off the fire at the Ames plant

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