Blowing dust as a result of gusty winds has prompted local air pollution officials to issue a health cautionary statement from Friday night through Saturday evening for San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Merced, Madera, Fresno, Kings, Tulare, and the Valley portion of Kern counties.
A low pressure system will generate gusty northwesterly winds as it moves across the region Friday night through Saturday. Winds will begin increasing in the northern and western parts of the Valley Friday night, Feb. 26 and then spread across the rest of the Valley through Saturday evening, Feb. 27. The gusty winds will cause localized blowing dust in areas where soils are exceptionally dry—creating unhealthy concentrations of particulate matter 10 microns and smaller (PM10). Exposure to particulate pollution can cause serious health problems, aggravate lung disease, trigger asthma attacks and bronchitis, and increase risk of respiratory infections.
Where conditions warrant, people with heart or lung disease should follow their doctors’ advice for dealing with episodes of particulate exposure. Additionally, older adults and children should avoid prolonged exposure or heavy exertion, depending on their local conditions.
For more information, visit www.valleyair.org or call the local District office in Modesto at 209-557-6400.