YOUNTVILLE (CBS SF) — In an unusual move, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) has issued a Winter Spare the Air Alert from Friday all the way through Monday because of heavy smoke and particulates drifting into the Bay Area from the so-called Camp Fire which continues to rage in Butte County.

The blanket of unhealthy air has forced some North Bay Schools to close and numerous scheduled North Coast Section playoff football games to be postponed.

The extended air quality alert was issued because smoke from the Camp Fire continues to cause elevated levels of particulate pollution in the region, especially impacting the North Bay and East Bay, BAAQMD officials said. Outdoor and indoor burning of wood or any other solid fuel is prohibited for the duration of the alert. It is recommended to limit outdoor activities as much as possible.

Early Friday afternoon, the North Coast Section took what officials called an “unprecedented” step by postponing 75 percent of scheduled playoff football games until Monday due to the unhealthy air.

The postponed games include Monte Vista at San Ramon Valley in Danville, San Leandro at California in San Ramon and Benicia at Bishop O’Dowd in Oakland. A total of 16 games were postponed.

Other games including Pittsburg and De La Salle in Concord on Friday night and Clayton Valley Charter and Liberty in Brentwood on Saturday night were not affected.

“We have some games that we are not altering because, frankly, all the data that we have shows that they’re going to be fine,” NCS Commissioner Gil Lemmon said. “We didn’t change them if we didn’t feel it was necessary. But in all the other games, the air quality is so poor that logistically we don’t want to wait until the last-minute.”

A full list of games scheduled for Friday and Saturday that have been postponed can be found online.

In addition, the National Weather Service has simultaneously issued a red flag warning and a frost warning for the region this weekend — fire danger is high for the Santa Cruz Mountains, the North Bay and the East Bay hills because of windy, dry conditions in the forecast, yet frost is also likely because of overnight temperatures dropping into the low 30s Saturday morning, mainly in the North Bay and southern Salinas valleys.

Smoke from wildfires contains chemicals, gases and fine particles that are harmful. The biggest hazard is from breathing in the fine particles, which can reduce lung function, worsen asthma and exacerbate existing heart and lung conditions, officials say.

Many residents awoke Friday with their homes filled with the smell of burning wood and air quality officials had issued a warning.

According to the federal EPA air quality site, Alameda had an unhealthy air index of 165 and a particulate pollution measure of PM2.5, meaning there are particles that measure 2.5 microns across.


Oakland resident Danny Wertheimer wore a surgical mask as he went for his Thursday evening walk in Oakland. “I looked out my window and I saw the smoke filter in,” he said. “It looked bad. It’s the worse I’ve seen this year. It just came in so quickly.”

Joseph Hall said the smoke has left him gasping for air at times. “There is ash in my mouth,” he said. “My mouth and my nose are dry as a bone.”

The smoke was being driven into the Bay Area by east winds and the plume streams out hundreds of miles into the Pacific at 3,000 to 4,000 feet.

The poor air quality forced officials at Santa Rosa Junior College and Sonoma State University to cancel Friday classes.

“Due to projections that the air quality in Sonoma County will not improve by tomorrow, all #SRJC campuses and sites will be closed through Friday, Nov. 9 and all classed and activities will be canceled,” said a statement from the community college.

“The air quality at Sonoma State University remains poor due to the fires in Butte County and is projected to stay at unhealthy levels at least through Friday. As a result, the decision has been made to cancel Friday classes and suspend normal business operations for the day,” said a statement from the CSU school.

Meanwhile, Santa Rosa police said their department had been inundated with calls as was Napa County’s fire dispatch center.

Schools were also closed across Sonoma County including:

  • Alexander Valley Union, Healdsburg
  • Bennett Valley Union, Santa Rosa
  • Bellevue Union School District
  • Cotati-Rohnert Park Unified School District
  • Cloverdale Unified, Cloverdale
  • Forestville Union, Forestville
  • Geyserville Unified, Geyserville
  • Guerneville School District, Guerneville
  • Harmony Union, Occidental
  • Healsdsburg Unified, Healdsburg
  • Horicon
  • Kenwood School District, Kenwood
  • Mark West Union, Santa Rosa/Larkfield
  • Monte Rio Union, Monte Rio
  • Oak Grove Union, Santa Rosa
  • Petaluma City Schools, Petaluma
  • Piner-Olivet Union School District, Santa Rosa
  • Rincon Valley Union, Santa Rosa
  • Roseland School District, Roseland
  • Santa Rosa City Schools, Santa Rosa
  • Sebastopol Union, Sebastopol
  • Sonoma Valley Unified, Sonoma
  • Twin Hills Union, Sebastopol
  • Two Rock Union, Petaluma
  • West Sonoma County Union High School District, Sebastopol/Forestville
  • Wright School District, Santa Rosa
  • Windsor Unified, Windsor
  • SCOE special education classes held within the school districts that are closed
  • SCOE Transition Program classes for 18-22 year olds
  • Amarosa Academy (SCOE)
  • North Coast School of Education classes at SCOE
Comments (40)
    1. Ronald Jackson says:

      this happens every time liberals pass gas

      1. Plarp Zootie says:

        Hate filled Republicans want to see California burned to the ground.

  1. Nature’s way of cleaning deadwood in the forests and in the streets of SF.

  2. Lousy reporting. PM2.5 is the size of the particulates that are being measured, not the concentration which is what tells you the level of pollution. Saying “On Friday, the particle pollution measure in Beijing was also PM2.5.” is like saying that feet are measured in inches. It may be technically right but it doesn’t tell you how long the object is. At 12 pm on Friday the PM2.5 count in Beijing was 30, but that was after a strong wind blew in lowering from about 160 at 6 am. This is precisely the danger of having technically-ignorant journalists (and lazy editors) reporting on science and, quite frankly, it is the kind of garbage reporting that empowers climate changes deniers. Get your facts right or don’t report on it.

  3. Here’s the results from a Dem run state. Remind you of another city like Flynt, MI?

  4. Dave Fay says:

    At least all the smoke will slightly cover the urine and poop smell on the streets of SF.

  5. Neal Schultz says:

    Great. Now the filth that has spread across the ground of San Franfeces is now in the air. No Justice (for Citizens), No Clean Air for Socialists. 🙂

  6. Tom Osborne Sr. says:

    God’s way of getting Californicate’s attention. Hope He keeps it up till the whole state is gone.

  7. San Fran definitely doesn’t need dirtier air. Studies have shown that both air pollution and noise pollution lower resident intelligence. Since cities have much higher levels or air and noise pollution than rural environments, the correlation can clearly be demonstrated by voting patterns, with the lowered intelligence voters expressing a preference for Democrats. Best to clear up the air and noise people!

  8. Anne L Hilliard says:

    Time to revoke all those millions of illegal aliens’ drivers licenses.

  9. Wilbur Post says:

    Probably caused by those steaming sidewalks.

  10. Carter Gwynn says:

    Californians are killing the planet.

  11. Zak Watson says:


    Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

    The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

    Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

    What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

    How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

    And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

  12. Did you come here from Drudge? I did from, which has more news just from California.

  13. Redden Swartz says:

    I guess it takes one HELL of signal from Mother Nature to get Californias attention. They go about things that are way out of normal on the West coast, you would think that Disney Land had spread from state border to border and all of the citizens are living in La La Land, Well I hope they all wake up and make some changes or there won’t be much left of this wacko state. I wonder where the next fire, or earthquake will be. It won’t be long before we find out What a shame, it used to be a nice place to visit, but not now.

  14. Umberto Cellini says:

    Do not put ICE(!) or water on Cali fires. This is karma, pure and simple.

    “God gave Noah the rainbow sign.
    ‘No more water, the fire next time!’ “

  15. Jim M. Ryles says:

    WHO CARES! As long as it’s progressive liberal socialist dimwits that choke to death on their own cult of climate change propaganda..

  16. John Oakman says:

    It’s the piles of poop that is causing poor air quality.

  17. Does anyone think these students’ air is any better at home than at school? Might as well have them at school.

  18. snailmailtrucker says:

    Dianne Feinstein (D-Beijing) Takes a Victory lap !

  19. Dusty Rhodes says:

    The air quality is a measurement of 2.5 micron particles. Standard medical procedure masks available at CVS/Walgreens/etc have no blockage effect against 2.5 micron particles. These masks are just feel good accessories. Folks should use masks with canister filters instead. They cost about $35 and replacement canisters are about $20 a pair.

  20. hmichaelh says:

    So, can I deduce from this situation the intrusive and ignorant rules and regulations the State of California has inflicted on its citizens about reducing environmental factors has been a giant waste of time and money?

  21. Stehr Va says:

    But but but its California, where they have passed all those stupid laws to protect us from straws, and plastic and carbon and any other thing they can think of. It is where they want to outlaw cows because they fart and it leaves a carbon foot print. It is where everyone is a vegan and drinks coffee and does no wrong. Yeah and look at what it really is folks a cesspool of hedonistic animals and Hollywierds telling everyone else what to do. Personally I think that God is fed up with them.