Letters to the editor-07-12-2013

July 12, 2013 

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AIR POLLUTION

Summer months crucial for cleanup efforts

Thanks to the Idaho Statesman for reminding Idahoans that summer is a time to pay particular attention to what they're breathing ("Air quality diminishes in Treasure Valley due to ozone and smoke, triggering orange air quality alert," Statesman, July 2). The American Lung Association offers simple, effective tips for protecting you and your family from the dangers of air pollution:

• Check daily air quality reports on the news or at airnow.gov.

• Avoid exercising outdoors and limit children's outdoor playtime when pollution levels are high.

• Reduce driving: combine trips and walk, bike or carpool whenever possible.

• Fill up your gas tank before the sun comes up or after dark to prevent sunlight from converting evaporating gas emissions to ozone.

• Use hand-powered or electric lawn care equipment instead of gas-powered. Two-stroke lawnmower and leaf blower engines can pollute even more than cars.

• Don't allow smoking indoors. Dangerous particles from cigarette smoke can remain in the air long after the cigarette is extinguished.

Call our free Lung Helpline for more information: 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872 and choose Option 2).

JAN M. FLYNN, Idaho director, American Lung Association-Mountain Pacific, Boise

FIRE TRAGEDY

Firefighters' supervisors are responsible for safety

I have been associated in some fashion with all aspects of wildland fire for almost 50 years.

My sympathy and prayers go out to the families and friends of the 19 wildland fire fighters who lost their lives in a recent wildland fire.

The first and primary responsibility of an Incident Command Team is the safety and well being of the people working on the fire line or close to it.

With conditions as extreme as they are on fires these days, all persons should be ordered to their safety zones during the afternoon burning period.

Regardless of conditions, persons should never be allowed a quarter mile from their safety zone. Where was their division supervisor?

The entire team should never be allowed to work in any aspect of wildland fire again.

While the crew was in its safety zone, the aerial attack could continue if pilots deemed conditions safe.

Before work begins, a satisfactory shelter spot should be selected and prepared.

ODOS LOWERY, Boise

EMTS

Celebrate service by participating in parade

After watching the Fourth of July parade in front of the Capitol, it struck me that we have no EMS alumni marching. Former and current EMT members are everywhere in Idaho, so how come we are not marching, proud of our service? We would also be an example to others who may want to serve our community.

If you would like to participate, please contact me at stephtone@icloud.com. You will need your patches, a white dress shirt, black shoes and black pants. That should do it. You all earned the right to be celebrated for your courage and devotion to our community. There are few pleasures in life greater than sharing moments with a comrade in arms. Looking forward to hearing from you.

ANTHONY YEAMANS, Nampa

IDAHO'S BIRTHDAY

Coverage ignores state

We are annoyed. Today, July 3 was Idaho's birthday. The Statesman had 150 icons. However, we saw nothing in the paper wishing Idaho a Happy Birthday. What about a banner?

There was all sorts of news for July 4, which of course is important, but so is Idaho's own birthday. If we missed something we do apologize, but if there was something, it sure wasn't obvious.

WAYNE AND ELNA DAWSON, Nampa

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