SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) extended am advisory Wednesday warning of a possible drop in air quality through Friday as smoke from nearby wildfires makes its way to the Bay Area.
Though the management district declared the air quality was “good” that morning, winds blowing smoke from wildfires in the Sacramento Valley are beginning to reach areas such as Vallejo and Oakland.READ MORE: Teen Driver Inured in Crash on Route 84
⚠️ Wildfire smoke is expected to continue to impact the Bay Area through Friday, 8/20.
Northerly winds will transport smoke toward the Bay Area and smoke impacts are forecast to be more widespread than last week. Air quality is expected to be in the mid to high-moderate range. pic.twitter.com/fcLu62Zfvm
— Bay Area Air Quality (@AirDistrict) August 18, 2021
“Light northerly winds will continue to transport smoke toward the Bay Area. Smoke impacts are forecast to be more widespread than last week,” the BAAQMD announced Wednesday on its website. “Air quality is expected to be in the mid to high-moderate range and not exceed the federal health standard, so no Spare the Air Alert is in effect. However, smoke may mix to the surface at times causing intermittent and isolated pockets of elevated pollution levels.”
The fires producing the majority of the smoke include the Caldor Fire in El Dorado County, the McFarland Fire in Shasta County and the Monument Fire in Trinity County. The Caldor Fire recently burned over 53,000 acres and was zero percent contained as of Wednesday afternoon.
Bay Area residents KPIX spoke with said the decline in air quality was noticeable.
“It’s pretty horrific. We just walked out here and my eyes are burning and I told the girls, ‘Make sure your masks stay on,'” said Burlingame resident Allison Bluestein.
“My throat’s a little dry and scratchy because of the air quality. Not [getting] the headache this time, though. I remember before it was one of those things, ‘Do I even want to go out of the house?'” said Jerry Mann of Burlingame.
The poor air quality resulted in some youth sports practices getting cancelled, including some teams in the South Bay and on the Peninsula.READ MORE: Homeless Man Found Dead with Gunshot Wounds Near Creek Trail
“My older daughter’s practice did get cancelled for this afternoon,” Redwood City parent Anna Carlos said.
Others held light practices, says Millbrae parent Min Xu, who’s son went to baseball practice on Wednesday.
“The coach said they were not going to do anything very strenuous,” he said.
There was one sign of improvement in the weather. Bay Area office of the National Weather Service canceled its red flag warning ahead of schedule on Wednesday.
Winds have subsided which allowed us the confidence to cancel our #RedFlagWarning a little early.
— NWS Bay Area (@NWSBayArea) August 18, 2021
KPIX chief meteorologist Paul Heggen says that he expects more smoke to blow into the Bay Area Wednesday night, Thursday, and even into Friday, though he expects improvement in air quality “as stronger onshore winds kick in.”
“The Dixie Fire and Caldor Fire will continue to grow and behave erratically this week, along with the various other fires in the state, because of gusty offshore winds and record-dry vegetation, ” Heggen said. “Fire danger in the Bay Area won’t be as high as last night/this morning, but still bears watching.”MORE NEWS: Repairs Finish Early on Ramp Between I-80 and Highway 101