The Bay Area Air Quality Management District issued an air quality advisory for Tuesday and Wednesday because of smoke coming into the region from wildfires further north in California and Oregon.
By early Tuesday afternoon, a thick haze of smoke was visible in many parts of the region with residents across the Bay Area smelling and feeling the impact of the poor air quality.
Sonoma County went so far as to issue a health advisory due to poor air quality from the smoke for Tuesday through Wednesday, Sept. 20. County officials said the air quality was expected to be in the moderate range over the next two days.
"Some people may experience adverse health effects from the smoke. Members of sensitive groups may experience effects that are more serious," the advisory said. "Older adults, pregnant individuals, children and people with heart disease or respiratory illness should avoid prolonged outdoor exertion. Everyone else, especially children, should limit outdoor exertion. Take more breaks during outdoor activities."
Residents were advised to shelter in place if possible and to set air conditioning units and car vent systems to recirculate to keep outside air from moving inside.
The Bay Area office of the National Weather Service said that the smoke could linger for several days.
San Francisco issued a similar warning to residents Tuesday afternoon, suggesting those sensitive to smoke should consider adjusting any planned outdoor activity.
KPIX Chief Meteorologist Paul Heggen noted that despite the terrible air quality being measured in San Francisco, the BAAQMD had still not issued a Spare the Air alert. The BAAQMD website said that while an air quality advisory for wildfire smoke was issued through Wednesday, "Pollutant levels are NOT expected to exceed the national 24-hour health standard and there is no Spare the Air Alert in effect."
People can find the latest air quality readings in their part of the region by visiting:
AirNow - fire.airnow.gov
IQAir - www.iqair.com
Bay Area Air Quality Management District - baaqmd.gov
Northern Sonoma County Air Pollution Control District - nosocoair.org/
Purple Air - purpleair.com
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