May 3, 2013 - The Feather River Air Quality Management District Air Pollution Control Officer is issuing this Air Quality Advisory to notify the public of poor air quality conditions in Yuba and Sutter Counties due to smoke from the Panther and Cedar fires. Smoke impacts are expected to vary during the course of each day depending on wind direction and the intensity of local fire activity. Air quality is forecast to be in the "Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups" through the weekend.
The major air pollutant of concern is fine particulate matter also known as PM2.5. While all persons may experience varying degrees of symptoms, the more sensitive individuals, such as the young, aged and those with respiratory conditions are of greatest risk at experiencing more aggravated symptoms which may include, but are not limited to coughing, watery and itchy eyes, and difficulty in breathing.
Particulate and ozone concentrations from the sensor in Yuba City can be viewed online at: www.fraqmd.org.
Individuals who see or smell smoke should take the following actions to protect their health:
- Avoid voluntary outdoor activities if you can see or smell smoke, even if you're healthy
- Children, the elderly and people with respiratory or heart conditions should be particularly careful to avoid exposure
- Stay indoors with doors and windows closed as much as possible
- Asthmatics should follow their asthma management plan
- Contact your doctor if you have symptoms of cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms you believe to be caused by smoke
- Those with heart disease should especially limit their smoke exposure since PM can cause heart attacks
The very small particles in smoke can irritate the lungs of even healthy people, but are especially dangerous for seniors, children and those with lung and heart disease.
Disposable particulate respirators found at hardware stores can be effective at reducing exposure to smoke particles as long as they seal closely to the wearer's face. Look for respirators that have two straps and have the words "NIOSH" and either "P100" or "N95" printed on the filter material.
For additional information on air quality health effects, please visit www.fraqmd.org or call the District office at (530) 634-7659.
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