Prescribed Burns and Wildfires in Colorado: Impacts of Mitigation Measures on Indoor Air Particulate Matter. Journal Article uri icon



  • Wildfires and prescribed burns are receiving increasing attention as sources of fine particulate matter (PM2.5). The goal of this research project was to understand the impact of mitigation strategies for residences impacted by scheduled prescribed burns and wildfires. Pairs of residences were solicited to have PM2.5 concentrations monitored inside and outside of their houses during four fires. The effect of using air cleaners on indoor PM2.5 was investigated, as well as the effect of keeping windows closed. Appropriately sized air cleaners were provided to one of each pair of residences; occupants of all of the residences were asked to keep windows shut and minimize opening of exterior doors. Additionally, residents were asked to record all of the activities that may be a source of particulate matter, such as cooking and cleaning. Measurements were made during one prescribed burn and three wildfires during the 2002 fire season. Outdoor 24-hr average PM2.5 concentrations ranging from 6 to 38 µg/m(3) were measured during the fires, compared with levels of 2-5 µg/m(3) during background measurements when no fires were burning. During the fires, PM2.5 was <3 µg/m(3) inside all of the houses with air cleaners installed. This corresponds with a decrease of 63-88% in homes with the air cleaners operating when compared with homes without air cleaners. In the homes without the air cleaners, measured indoor concentrations were 58-100% of the concentrations measured outdoors.

publication date

  • October 1, 2005

has restriction

  • bronze

Date in CU Experts

  • January 21, 2017 12:43 PM

Full Author List

  • Henderson DE; Milford JB; Miller SL

author count

  • 3

Other Profiles

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 2162-2906

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 1516

end page

  • 1526


  • 55


  • 10