The Butte County Air Quality Management District Air Pollution Control Officer and the Butte County Public Health Officer are issuing this Air Quality Advisory to notify the public of poor air quality conditions in Butte County due to smoke from the Ponderosa Fire. Smoke impacts are expected to vary during the course of each day depending on wind direction, intensity of the fire activity, and time of day. Canyons will also carry smoke to the valley floor. Expect smoke to rise with daytime heating and settle into low- lying areas at night. Today, air quality is forecast to be “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups” for Paradise and foothill areas surrounding Lake Oroville. Air quality is forecast to be “Moderate” on the valley floor, including Chico, Gridley, and Oroville.
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, the elderly, pregnant women, smokers, 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.
Persons experiencing questionable or severe symptoms should seek professional medical advice and treatment. The following actions are recommended as needed in areas impacted by smoke:
Limit outdoor exertion, especially children, the elderly, and those with pre-existing respiratory conditions;
Keep doors and windows closed as much as possible in buildings and vehicles.
Avoid the use of non-HEPA paper face mask filters which are not capable of filtering extra
Check or replace air conditioner filters. Use the air conditioner on the recirculate setting.
Questions and requests for recommendations concerning specialized outdoor events and school activities may be directed to the Butte County Air Quality Management District at 332-9400 during regular business hours.
This notification will remain in effect until further notice. Outdoor residential burning is currently prohibited by CalFire. Information will be updated and posted to the District website as available at www.bcaqmd.org.