Your home may be affected by smoke, soot and ash, chemicals, structural damage, and water damage. This information is a collection of health and safety items to think about as you start to repair your home. It covers many general topics. Not all of the information may apply to your situation.
Do not go back into any areas that were heavily damaged or destroyed by the wildfire until the local authorities allow you to return.
Once you are able to enter burned out areas safely, be very careful. Take basic precautions and be aware of hazards to your health and safety.
If you or your family becomes injured by fire debris, get help. You may need medical attention. Even if a dirty wound or puncture injury does not look severe, it could put you at risk for an infection or for tetanus if your immunization is not up to date. If you need medical help:
What hazards should I watch for?
What personal protective equipment (PPE) should I use to enter burned out areas?
Use PPE when entering your home. In particular, people with
asthma or respiratory conditions should only spend short periods of time in these areas and wear respiratory protection.
How to Self-Fit N95 Masks (Respirator)
Always read and follow the manufacturer's directions when using a mask.
Protective clothing, gloves, and boots:
Eye, face, and head protection:
If you’d like more information about the health risks from wildfire smoke, please read
Wildfire Smoke and Your Health
Return to your property only once your local authorities have said it’s safe to do so. You may not have water, natural gas, or electricity services when you return.
When entering your yard:
DO NOT enter your home if:
Take all appropriate precautions to protect yourself and family.
When entering your home:
These symptoms may be worse depending on the type of soot or ash, how long you’re exposed, and if you already have a respiratory condition.
Fire retardants and your pets
Review your insurance information or other options
If you are insured:
Help may be available through your local, private service organizations such as:
Visit the local reception or information centres to find out more.
Current as of: June 26, 2018
Author: Environmental Public Health, Alberta Health Services
This material is for information purposes only. It should not be used in place of medical advice, instruction, or treatment. If you have questions, talk with your doctor or appropriate healthcare provider. This information may be printed and distributed without permission for non-profit, education purposes. The content on this page may not be changed without consent of the author. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.