UO continues to monitor current air quality from wildfire smoke

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The university is maintaining regular operations with no change to work schedules and no closures during the current air quality conditions.

Employees from Campus Planning and Facilities Management, Facilities Services, Design and Construction and Environmental Health and Safety are monitoring the rapid change in air quality across Oregon and how it might affect UO campus facilities and the UO community.

Many UO facilities, such as science and research facilities and the University Health Center, maximize outside air intake, which is required by code and aligns with COVID-19 recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and the Oregon Health Authority. Campus air handling/HVAC systems will not be adjusted at this time for these reasons.

Building HVAC system filters will prevent wildfire-related ash from depositing inside buildings. However, buildings may experience smoke-related nuisance odors and indoor respiratory irritants. Facilities Services and Environmental Health and Safety will continue to evaluate systems and replace filters once the smoke event has concluded. 

Additional indoor air quality information can be found on the Safety and Risk Services website

Nonemergency air quality issues can be reported to Environmental Health and Safety using its online form. If your issue is urgent, please contact EHS at 541-346-3192.

During extreme conditions, employees should communicate with supervisors regarding concerns about workspaces or assignments and use their best judgment to stay safe and comfortable. Safety sheets for monitoring air quality impacted by wildfire smoke and avoiding heat stress offer helpful information.

The Office of Human Resources provides guidance for employees and supervisors about working conditions when air quality issues exist and during heat advisories to ensure the safety and comfort of employees.

As with other inclement weather events, employees who are unable to report to work because of extreme weather may use accrued vacation, compensatory time, exchange time, personal leave or leave without pay to cover the missed work time, if applicable and approved by the supervisor, to the extent approval is required. Use of accrued sick leave is appropriate only in the case of illness.