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Officials Ask Bay Area Residents To Spare The Air

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(Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

(Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – The Bay Area Air Quality Management District is asking the public to refrain from wood burning on Tuesday, recommending a no burn day.

But unlike several days in the past few weeks, a Spare the Air alert has not been officially issued for the Bay Area.

“We ask people to voluntarily refrain from burning as opposed to making it mandatory and sending out patrols,” said Bay Area Air Quality Management District spokesperson Lisa Fasano. “We are seeing air pollution levels coming down very slowly because of all the smoke buildup we had over the holiday weekend.”

Fasano said that air quality has been poor for most of December and tests showed incredibly bad conditions on Christmas Day.

“We exceeded federal health standards in every county of the Bay Area. We have very unhealthy air,” she said. “It is the kind of air we see at the levels when we have a major forest fire.”

Fasano said that wind and rain could create better conditions, although they are still urging residents to not burn wood in their fireplaces.

There have been 10 mandatory Winter Spare the Air Days so far this year.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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