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Protect people from wood smoke

2014-08-20T00:00:00Z 2014-08-20T10:04:09Z Protect people from wood smoke The Billings Gazette
August 20, 2014 12:00 am

Since the Associated Press picked up the story, I became aware of the recent situation on Olson Drive where a neighbor assaulted another with a novelty-type sword in the wee hours of the morning. The police report notes a fire pit was the cause.

The proliferation of backyard fire pits in recent years has made it seem acceptable to smoke up everybody's air. Shame on you if you thought it was safe on a hot summer night and you left your bedroom window open upon retiring. If you don't have air conditioning or cannot afford the electric bill to run it, too bad. You are expected to keep your windows shut and suffer the heat lest the neighbor's wood smoke comes inside to awaken and sicken you at any hour.

Wood smoke, just like tobacco smoke, is known to cause and exacerbate many health conditions such as asthma, heart attacks and strokes, cancer, headaches, upper respiratory problems and more.

I want to express my deepest compassion to the man who was pushed over the edge; he committed a regrettable assault when the wood burner came knocking at his door. I hope the magistrate or judge takes all the stressful circumstances into consideration when he or she considers Robert Green's case. And I hope elected officials and health authorities are also paying attention. We need them to protect vulnerable persons from wood smoke.

Carol A. Wivell


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