N95 could help reduce hospitalisation from wildfire smoke

another good reason to keep N95s to hand


The masks offer a ‘promising means’ to reduce inhalation of particulate air pollution

N95 respirators could offer robust protection from wildfire smoke, researchers say.

According to an August study in the AGU journal GeoHealth, the regulatory standard masks offer a “promising means” to reduce the inhalation of particulate air pollution and reduce the risk of negative health effects. 


  • Comments (5)

    • 2

      Many of us have N95’s close by because we use them daily for covid prevention. If there was a house fire even, that probably would stop some of the dangerous gasses and particulates that otherwise might knock you unconscious or cause lung damage.

      Thanks for the article Bill.

    • 3

      Bill, I’ve used them for just that purpose. Wildfires in our area had produced such terrible air that I’d get a headache within minutes outdoors. Hubby & I found we could take our usual morning walks using N95’s and not get headaches. After a few uses we could see a tan particulate coating on the outside of the masks. 
      Our BOB’s have a couple N95’s for that purpose too. 

    • 2

      Good evening Bill,

      It’s a good reason, but still, here in Virginia, can be somewhat dangerous to wear.

      Our Governor, an M.D., declared that N95s and related be reserved for front line medical facility workers eg physicians, nurses, direct support staff. Initially, there was a shortage due the original supply chain. 

      We’ve had “flare-ups” of confrontations by trashy “citizens” serving as enforcers of Governor’s edict.

      I do have a supply of 3M N95s w/ and w/o valves and also a large suply of P100s.

      This area has an abundant armed population and plenty of alcohol and pharma.

      Like most else in prepping, the various scenarios must be reviewed and best approach acted upon.

      Even when I carry a N95 for immediate use, I also carry a visible saw dust protecting mask.

      Wild fires here also along with a transitory population of Navy ariving from places like subSahara Africa and Latin America.  This rural corridor from Navy Norfolk to metro D.C. is virus-ridden, similiar, but not as bad, as a medical facility like a rural hospital.

      Safety governs.

    • 1

      If I wanted to extend the life of my N95’s, what would be the best way of going about that?

      • Cheap disposable mask on the outside, then and N95 close to my face? (protects the N95 against outside contaminates)
      • N95 on the outside and cheap disposable mask near my face? (protects N95 from moisture of my breath, but might not give the N95 a good seal)

      My guess is that it would depend on the environment you are in. The first option might be good for going through a wildfire, because there is more particulate on the outside, but the second option might be better for EDC because your breath would be the biggest contaminate. 

      • 2

        Good afternoon Peter 44,

        Good thinking; good planning.

        My circumstances are different here in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Non-hospital workers not authorized to wear N95s or higher per Governor’s XO (number 72)

        Thus, personally would wear the N95 next to face and covered with a D-I-Y mask of copper infused cloth and a store bought face mask (won’t stop even sawdust, let along viruses)

        My reasoning is to extend my personal life. Violence in abdundance here.

        A couple of websites – believe HHS – tell how hospitals disinfect their N95s for reuse. A basic search could yield some decent results. Remember, hospitals and EMTs have support system. They do cost $$$ to have. Private citizen preppers don’t have this. Definitely factor our environment into planning.