Smoke from Terwilliger Fire impacts Lane County residents

"I love to walk and it's very difficult to walk when it's hazy and smokey," said Julie, Eugene resident.

Posted: Aug 29, 2018 7:49 PM
Updated: Aug 29, 2018 7:55 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- There's a bit of a hazy hue in the sky as smoke from the Terwilliger Fire returns to Lane County. Many people said the smoke impacting their routines.

Even with haze over the City of Eugene, experts with the Lane Regional Air Protection Agency said the air quality level is still better than last week; they said it's fairly good.

Julie lives in Eugene and hikes Skinner Butte often. She said the smoke has had a big impact on her routine, from buying a mask to try to keep the smoke out of her lungs to skipping her walks altogether.

"Last week I bought the right kind of mask and I started walking with it, and I couldn't get enough oxygen in to get a really get good walk in," said Julie. "So I ended up taking it off, which I shouldn't have, and I didn't walk the next day." 

The 4J School District is also watching the air quality closely. Matt Binkerd, the Athletic & Activities Dir. at Sheldon High School, said they had to move several practices indoors last week because of the poor air quality. 

"Anytime the air quality index of particles go above 100, that means we need to shut things down outside and come indoors for practice," said Binkerd. "Or we have to reschedule games if we have games that afternoon."

He said they're hoping the air quality will be good enough for their first home football game this Friday.

Jo Niehaus with LRAPA said Lane County can expect this haze to linger, as long as the fire is burning. She said residents will wake up to it in the morning, and said the wind will push it back over the fire in the afternoon.

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