Air Quality + Evacuation Resource Page
Hey Rae Crew,
Safety and education are some of our top priorities at Rae Studios. In response to the on-going events, we made this blog post to share some tips and resources in regards to the unhealthy air quality and the potential for evacuation. If you have any additional resources/information to share, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
As a disclaimer, Rae Studios plans to limit operations in response to the wildfires and evacuations. See MindBody for our most up-to-date class offerings. If you have been affected affected by the wildfires and need adjustments to your membership/packages, please contact email@example.com
All the best,
Rae Studios Management
How to PREPARE for Unhealthy Air/Smoke Events
Create a personal, family, or group emergency plan, gather emergency supplies, and be ready to evacuate.
Prepare your home:
Weatherize homes and buildings in preparation for wildfires by replacing or refurbishing old leaky windows and doors; use caulking to seal the openings.
Consider purchasing a non-ozone-producing air purifier (HEPA) to create a cleaner air room in your home, or consider purchasing a MERV 13 or greater filter for your HVAC system to be used when experiencing a heavy smoke event.
Consider upgrading to an HVAC system that allows for both heating and cooling. Be sure it includes a mechanism to switch to “recirculate” to prevent smoke from entering the space.
Plan to go to a cleaner air location if you are unable to seal your home or if dense smoke occurs during hot weather events and you cannot stay in your home. Heat takes precedence over smoke.
How to STAY SAFE DURING Unhealthy Air/Smoke Events
Know your air quality. Smoke levels can change a lot during the day, so wait until air quality is better before you are active outdoors. Check airnow.gov for air quality forecasts and current air quality conditions. On AirNow.gov, you can also sign up to get email notifications, download an air quality app, or check current fire conditions.
Go to an Extreme Weather Center. Extreme Weather Centers provide indoor spaces with cleaner air and cooler temperatures. They are open to anyone who is seeking respite from high temperatures or poor air quality, especially our unsheltered neighbors.
Reduce your risk of health problems:
Have enough medication and food on hand (enough for more than 5 days, if possible).
Follow your health care provider’s advice about what to do if you have heart or lung disease.
If you have asthma, follow your asthma management plan.
If you feel sick, reduce your exposure to smoke and contact your healthcare provider.
Take it easier during smoky times to reduce how much smoke you inhale. If it looks or smells smoky outside, avoid strenuous activities such as mowing the lawn or going for a run.
Reduce smoke in your vehicle by closing the windows and vents and running the air conditioner in “recirculate” mode. Slow down when you drive in smoky conditions.
Do not rely on dust masks or bandanas for protection from smoke. They do nothing to protect against smoke particles.
Do not rely on N-95 respirators for protection from smoke.
N-95 respirators are no substitute for being indoors. Not an option? Know this: N-95 respirators may not be helpful for all people and may be dangerous for certain people with lung or heart conditions.
Certified N-95s are not available for children. Children should not wear these masks; they do not fit properly and can impede breathing.
If you choose to wear an N-95 respirator, follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for properly fitting an N-95 respirator.
Wearing an ill-fitted respirator can lead to a false sense of security and to over exertion.
Taking a respirator on and off can cause fine particulate matter to build up in the respirator which the wearer will breathe when it is put back on the face.
Use a new respirator. Old or reused N-95 respirators are not effective.
Masks, even when worn properly, can become uncomfortable and hot.
If an N-95 makes you feel better, wear it. If you feel worse, don't! N-95s are not meant for everyone.
Get air quality data where you live by city or zip code: www.AirNow.gov
Bay Area Air Quality Management District: https://www.baaqmd.gov/
Air Respite Centers
San Francisco Public Library, in partnership with the San Francisco Department of Emergency Management, has designated the below list of 11 public libraries as air respite centers, providing indoor respite with mechanical air filtration in response to the outdoor air quality index reaching unhealthy levels. Open from 10am - 5:30pm.
Main Library – 100 Larkin
Chinatown/Him Mark Li Branch Library – 1135 Powell Street
Excelsior Branch Library – 4400 Mission Street
Mission Branch Library – 300 Bartlett Street
Mission Bay Branch Library – 960 4th Street
Ocean View Branch Library – 345 Randolph Street
Ortega Branch Library – 3223 Ortega Street
Potrero Branch Library – 1616 20th Street
Richmond Branch Library – 351 9th Avenue
Visitacion Valley Branch Library – 201 Leland Avenue
West Portal Branch Library – 190 Lenox Way
Keep These Six “P's” Ready In Case Immediate Evacuation Is Required:
People and pets.
Papers, phone numbers, and important documents.
Prescriptions, vitamins, and eyeglasses.
Pictures and irreplaceable memorabilia.
Personal computer hard drive and disks.
“Plastic” (credit cards, ATM cards) and cash.
Here's a list of things you can prepare now in case your home is ever in harm's way:
Have a grab-and-go kit..Include essential supplies, such as water, food, and first-aid supplies.
Have copies of important papers. ...
Safeguard pets. ...
Prep your yard. ...
Know your utility shutoffs. ...
Stockpile sandbag materials. ...
*We don’t want to create panic, but we do want to stay informed with today's current
Have copies of important papers. Keep these in a plastic, waterproof case. FYI, this stuff is priceless, because you may need to prove who you are and that you own your house. Include:
Your driver's license.
The deed to your house.
Proof of insurance.
Social security cards.
A list of personal contacts.
Safeguard pets. Make sure they’re micro-chipped and have I.D. collars. Create pet grab-and-go kits that include leashes, medications, meal bowls, and three days worth of food and water.
Prep your yard. Maintain your trees and shrubs so diseased or weakened branches won’t fall down and damage your property.
Know your utility shutoffs. Learn now how to safely shut off all utility services in your home. FEMA has tips for shutting off electricity, water, and gas. Note: To turn off gas you may need a special wrench.
Stockpile sandbag materials. If you live in a flood prone area, keep sandbags on hand or the materials to make them. It takes 100 sandbags to create a 1-foot-tall wall that’s 20 feet long. If you’re filling bags on the fly, two adults can create the wall in about an hour.
Protect windows. If you live in an area susceptible to hurricanes, install shutters that are rated to provide protection from windblown debris.
When It’s Time to Evacuate
Before you pick up and go (and if you have enough time) follow these steps -- they're designed to protect your pets and help prevent property damage:
Clear your yard. Remove any objects hanging on trees or your home’s exterior, such as birdhouses and wind chimes -- they can break off in high winds and cause serious damage. Bring inside anything that’s not nailed down including lawn furniture, trashcans, toys, and garden equipment.
Shut off utilities. Turn off electricity, water, and gas. Doing so will help prevent additional dangers including flooding, fire, and explosions. Keep in mind, you’re going to need the utility company to turn your gas back on when you return home.
Windproof windows and doors. If you don’t have storm-proof shutters, fit plywood coverings over all windows. (FYI, using just tape on windows is not recommended because it will not stop windows from breaking, just shattering.)
Protect indoor stuff. Move valuables to higher levels in your home to prevent water damage. As an extra measure, wrap electronics and furniture in sheets, blankets, or plastic drop cloths.
Gather up pets. If it’s not safe for you to stay, it’s not safe for Fido. Make plans to stay with friends or at a pet-friendly hotel -- most emergency shelters will only accept service animals that assist people with disabilities.
Lock your house. Because crooks and looters take advantage of evacuations, lock all doors and windows and don’t leave house keys in an obvious place, such as a mailbox.