Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Wednesday, December 6, 2017 -- Unhealthy Air Quality in Santa Barbara County

Unhealthy Air Quality in Santa Barbara County
Air Quality Warning Continues Until Conditions Improve

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. —The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department and the Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District today noted that air monitoring stations in Goleta and Santa Barbara recorded levels that were unhealthy for all to breathe yesterday. Smoke and ash from the Thomas Fire burning in Ventura County may continue to affect local air quality for days. Levels of smoke and particles, and areas impacted, including potentially other areas of the county, will vary, and conditions could change quickly. The agencies emphasized that the Air Quality Warning for Santa Barbara County remains in effect until conditions improve.

·         Check for current conditions. The chart will indicate when air quality is good, moderate, unhealthy for sensitive groups, and unhealthy for all. 
·         Avoid exercise outdoors, or scheduling school sports practices or exercise periods outdoors when air quality is impacted.

If you see or smell smoke in the air, be cautious and use common sense to protect your and your family’s health. Everyone, especially people with heart or lung disease (including asthma), older adults, and children, should limit time spent outdoors and avoid outdoor exercise when high concentrations of smoke and particles are in the air.

If you have symptoms that may be related to exposure to smoke and soot, contact your health care provider. Symptoms include repeated coughing, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, wheezing, chest tightness or pain, palpitations, and nausea or unusual fatigue or lightheadedness.

When wildfire smoke is impacting your neighborhood, consider purchasing an air-filtering device, which can help remove ash, soot, and dust.
·         Select a device with a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter.
·         Keep the device in one room that could serve as a “clean air room” — the packaging on most devices notes the suitable room size.

Keep windows closed and avoid using your fireplace. If you are sensitive to air pollution, and air quality is poor in your area to the extent that you are unable to keep indoor air clean, consider relocating to an area where the air is cleaner.

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