Sacramento handed out approximately 67,000 face masks in the past week to community members who wanted them. However, fire stations have since stopped the handouts due to questions of safety. While many masks have been deemed dangerous, including surgical and dust masks, N95 masks were believed to be the best option. But new reports claim that the N95 masks aren’t as protective as originally thought.
For starters, the masks have to be properly fitted to work effectively. Fit has been an issue for children, men with beards and other people. The county Department of Health says that the N95 masks can lead to breathing difficulties and elevated heart rate according to the Sacramento Bee. This is especially true for people with respiratory or cardiac conditions. The best way to combat the bad air quality is to stay inside.
The Sacramento County Public Health Officer does not recommend use of N95 masks. Effectively immediately, Metro Fire will no longer distribute masks. For more information on how to minimize your exposure, please follow this link: https://t.co/Yv2aEZ5hVd pic.twitter.com/df4DDjM3xi
— Metro Fire of Sacramento (@metrofirepio) November 15, 2018
“The use of the N95 Respirator Mask is only recommended for those near the fire who do not have the option to be indoors or have access to filtered/recirculated air,” Tuesday’s news release by the county said. Although, the county will still issue masks from fire stations to those who ask for them until their supply runs out.