[LA FEATURE]California Wildfires

LA FEATURE

Coverage of brush fires across the state

Stay Indoors: Smoke-Filled Air Puts Residents at Risk

The smoky conditions could get better as onshore winds are expected to return Friday afternoon, but officials warned that smoke could move inland with the breeze.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Southcoast Air Quality Management District issued an air quality advisory Friday. LAUSD responded by canceling all its sporting events. Lolita Lopez reports from Reseda for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Friday, May 16, 2014.

    With winds carrying smoke and ash far beyond the wildfires raging in parts of Southern California, the region's air pollution watchdog is warning vulnerable residents to stay indoors.

    "Everyone should avoid any vigorous outdoor or indoor exertion," in any area directly impacted by the smoke, according to a smoke advisory issued by the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

    Fires Prompt Air Quality Warning

    [LA] Fires Prompt Air Quality Warning
    The fires burning in San Diego County have prompted an advisory for all of Orange County and parts of both Los Angeles and Riverside counties. Vikki Vargas reports for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Friday, May 16, 2014.

    People with respiratory or heart disease, the elderly and children are especially at risk and should remain indoors with the windows and doors closed, according to the advisory.

    The advisory includes the coastal area stretching from north of Malibu to Long Beach and much of Los Angeles south of the 101 and 134 Freeways, including the westside, and central and south LA, as well as all of Orange County. Lake Elsinore and Temecula Valley were affected as well.

    People living or working in central and southeast LA who may be sensitive to the smoke were also urged to stay indoors.

    "Schools that have children with sensitive conditions, including heart disease, asthma, other chronic respiratory diseases, should not participate in PE or outdoor physical activity and should stay indoors as much as possible," according to an air quality advisory from the Los Angeles County of Public Health.

    All Los Angeles Unified School District athletic programs were on hold Friday due to the air quality warning.

    "We want to be safe to be safe and make sure our kids are safe at all times," Reseda High School Assistant Principal Robert Clarke said.

    About 100 student athletes at Reseda High School were affected by the atheletic progam hold Friday.

    "Even if you cant see it, you can see it in the kids faces," Reseda High School Athletic Director Fernando Fernandez said. "Most kids wont tell you, 'Coach I'm dying, I cant take this anymore.' We take them indoors, we go into the weight room, we go into different places."

    Residents with air conditioners were told to keep the fresh air intake closed an the filter clean to prevent bringing additional smoke inside.

    Ten major wildfires were burning throughout Southern California Friday, many of which being fought in San Diego County. The governer's office added 300 seasonal firefighters to combat the blazes as part of a Drought State of Emergency declaration.

     

    Lolita Lopez and Samia Khan contributed to this report.

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