Smoke from the 1,200-acre Soledad Fire was causing unhealthy air quality Monday in the Santa Clarita Valley and the San Gabriel Mountains, according to the South Coast Air Quality Management District and the county’s health officer.
“It is difficult to tell where smoke, ash or soot from a fire will go, or how winds will affect the level of these particles in the air, so we ask everyone to remember that smoke and ash can be harmful to health, even for people who are healthy,” Dr. Muntu Davis said.
“If you can see smoke, soot or ash, or you can smell smoke, pay attention to your immediate environment and take precautions to safeguard your health,” Los Angeles County’s health officer said. “These precautions are particularly important for children, older adults and people with heart or lung diseases.”
Davis urged people to avoid unnecessary outdoor exposure, and to limit physical exertion — whether indoor or outdoor.
Also, children and people who have “air quality sensitive conditions” — such as heart disease, asthma and other chronic respiratory diseases — should stay indoors as much as possible, even in areas where smoke, soot or ash cannot be seen or there is no smell of smoke. And if your condition worsens, contact your health care provider immediately for medical advice or call 911.
“Wildfire smoke” is a mixture of small particles, gases and water vapor — and small particles are the primary health concern because they can cause burning eyes, runny nose, scratchy throat, headaches and illnesses such as bronchitis.
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