Air quality conditions in parts of Los Angeles County and the Inland Empire were labeled Tuesday as “unhealthy” by officials as the effects of smog pollution were exacerbated by the ongoing heat wave and the Radford and Fairview wildfires that have been pouring smoke into the sky.
The South Coast Air Quality Management District issued smoke advisories in addition to an “ozone advisory” for any areas surrounding the fires where smoke can been seen or smelled.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the Radford fire grew to 450 acres overnight with no containment and the deadly Fairview fire had burned 2,500 acres with 5% containment. Both fires were first reported Monday afternoon.
By 5 p.m. Monday, AQMD issued a notice that air quality sensors in both Hemet and Big Bear still registered “good.”
The streak of excessive heat, in addition to the wildfires, led officials to extend the ozone advisory, which predicts the increase of poor air quality in multiple areas. The advisory was initially issued on Aug. 29, but now has been extended through Sept. 7 as forecasters predict things will not begin to significantly cool down until later this week.
Levels of smog, which is the predominant summertime pollutant, are predicted to reach “very unhealthy levels” in the San Bernardino valley and mountains in the afternoons with temperatures hitting triple digits. For sensitive groups, air quality will likely be “unhealthy” in most inland areas across the region.
#AirQuality Forecast (Tuesday, September 6th): https://t.co/szsyGAFunD
🏖 Coastal: Good -to- Moderate
🏙 LA: Moderate -to- Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups
🌅 OC: Good -to- Moderate
🌄 Inland Empire: Good -to- Unhealthy
🌴 Coachella Valley: Moderate pic.twitter.com/bAEuFr04z1
— South Coast AQMD (@SouthCoastAQMD) September 6, 2022
Officials recommend residents limit exposure to the smoke by remaining indoors with windows and doors closed or by seeking shelter away from areas affected by the fire, and avoiding vigorous physical activity.