In response to fast-moving brush fires that erupted in Southern California Wednesday night and Thursday morning, Direct Relief is reaching out to partners in the nearby areas and readying its fire-related inventory.
The emergency response team is in touch with its health center partners located near the affected areas while also preparing its stock of masks, inhalers, nebulizers and other items used to treat patients suffering from respiratory problems related to the fire and smoke. People with heart or lung disease may experience adverse conditions.
When smoke levels are high enough, even healthy people can experience symptoms of abnormal breathing, coughing, chest discomfort and shortness of breath, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In addition, first-aid products, medical supplies for eye irritation, and personal care products are on standby should they be requested for potentially- affected patients.
Authorities have ordered the evacuation of thousands of homes in both Ventura and Riverside counties. More than 10,000 acres have been consumed in the Springs Fire blaze near Camarillo. No injuries have been reported so far.
The Summit Fire, near Banning, Calif. in Riverside County, has destroyed one home and left two firefighters with minor injuries. It has burned roughly 3,000 acres, reports the Christian Science Monitor.