Potential for wildfire smoke to affect air quality at Stanford
Stanford continues to monitor the potential for poor air quality due to recent wildfire events in Northern California’s Sonoma County. We are currently monitoring the air quality index (AQI) though the AirNow website. In the event that air quality worsens during a wildfire smoke event, the campus community will be notified of specific actions via text and email through the AlertSU system.
Due to forecasted increased winds and low humidity, the National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for The Stanford Foothills. The Dish, Matadero Trail, and Coyote Hill Drone Flying Site in the Stanford foothills are closed due to the poor air quality and are anticipated to remain closed on Friday. Consult the Dish website for updates.
Protection from wildfire smoke
General guidance for protection from wildfire smoke and N95 respirator mask use is available on our Protection From Wildfire Smoke webpage.
Regional wildfire smoke can contribute to poor air quality conditions. Elevated particulate matter (PM) contained in smoke can travel into the lungs/airways and trigger certain health issues. Sensitivity to PM varies. Sensitive groups may include people with heart or lung disease, adults over the age of 65, pregnant women, and children. Individuals who are sensitive to PM might experience symptoms at levels less than 150. Symptoms can include lung irritation, persistent coughing, itchy eyes, sinus issues, sneezing, difficulty breathing, and chest tightness.
It is strongly recommended that students, faculty, and staff who may be sensitive to smoke consult their medical provider in preparation for a wildfire smoke event. We encourage managers to consider the needs of employees and have proactive discussions with employees about alternative work arrangements, if needed, due to health concerns. Employees may also seek assistance from Human Resources.
For more information, please visit these links:
- California Department of Public Health- N95 Respirator Masks FAQs.
- For current information on Bay Area air quality, visit Bay Area Air Quality Management District website.
- Centers for Disease Control – Protect Yourself from Wildfire Smoke