911 getting influx of calls about ash from Western Washington wildfires

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SEATTLE - Tuesday morning, ash from wildfires is being seen on vehicles in some places across Western Washington.

Interactive Map: Check air quality where you live

PHOTOS: Ash falls across Western Washington

KIRO 7 first started getting reports of ash late Monday night from North Bend and Issaquah and later, in the Renton Highlands.


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Tuesday morning, as KIRO 7 employees arrived at work, ash was on the station’s news cars in Seattle’s Belltown neighborhood. It has also been reported such places as Pierce County, Covington, Everett, Kent and White Center.  The National Weather Service in Seattle said the ash fall is mainly in Pierce County and the south edge of King County. Easterly winds coming out of the mountains has brought the ash to those areas.

KIRO 7 called Norcom's 911 dispatch, which said there has been an influx of calls reporting smoke, haze and ash where they live.

Dispatchers have told callers the conditions are from fires, not in the immediate area, but one of the many burning in the state, especially the Cascades.

The conditions have prompted health concerns about the air quality.

 

 

Those who are most at risk are infants, children, those over 65 and anyone with lung problems.

You may notice coughing, a scratchy throat, sinus issues or even stinging eyes and a runny nose.

The Norse Peak Fire near Crystal Mountain is one fire that has caused air problems.

“It's not very good for the sun right now, kind of hard to breathe with all the smoke in the air right now,” said Ashley Fisher, who was visiting Greenwater.

“It's kind of invasive. It's hard to breathe, kind of nasty,” said Chris Snelling, also visiting Greenwater.

The ash also discolored the view of the moon, making it appear red overnight.

Health officials are telling people to stay indoors if they can, avoid strenuous outdoor activities, and if you have air conditioning, keep your windows closed.

The State Department of Ecology is reporting that conditions should gradually improve Wednesday.

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