PNS Daily Newscast - January 17, 2020 

Govt. Accountability Office rules that Trump administration violated federal law on aid to Ukraine; and racial disparities in health care.

2020Talks - January 17, 2020 

Just a couple weeks out from the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary, four Senators are being pulled off the campaign trail for the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.

"Smoky" Mountains Make It Harder for Tennesseans to Breathe

Smoke is reported across the state and can even be seen on satellite photos. (National Weather Service)
Smoke is reported across the state and can even be seen on satellite photos. (National Weather Service)
November 15, 2016

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Most of the state is now in a Code Orange health advisory, designating the air quality unhealthy for sensitive or at-risk groups. More than 13,000 acres of land in Tennessee are in flames, as a result of an estimated 74 active fires impacting the state. Smoke from the wildfires, largely located on the Cumberland Plateau, is impacting air quality for Middle and Eastern Tennessee.

State epidemiologist Dr. Tim Jones said until conditions improve, stay inside.

"During times when there is a lot of smoke, I would avoid going out and jogging and doing strenuous outdoor activities, because that makes people breathe harder and can cause more smoke to enter the lungs," he said.

The Tennessee National Guard now is assisting with fighting the fires, located in Anderson, Campbell, Cumberland and Morgan counties. Thick smoke and haze is reported in many parts of the state. Emergency agencies urge the public to call 911 only if they see thick, black smoke or flames in a particular area.

Jones said it's also important to keep the air inside your home and car as healthy as possible. In a car, run your air on circulation, even if the heat or air conditioning is turned off. You can do the same for your house.

"Keeping doors and windows closed, and even if you don't necessarily need the air conditioning or the heater on, you just can set the thermostat to fan only," he explained. "And that won't necessarily change the temperature but that will also cycle the home air through those filters and can help some."

Jones added that if you're elderly, have young children in the house or have asthma, you can change your filters in your return air vents out for HEPA filters to improve air quality. You can also purchase a portable air filter for your home for less than $200.

Stephanie Carson, Public News Service - TN