Unhealthy Air Dangerous for the Entire Valley

July 9, 2008 3:46:52 PM PDT
The Valley is in the middle of a heat wave and air quality is predicted to remain in the very unhealthy category again. It's created a dangerous situation for the entire valley ? that's not going away any time soon.
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QUICK LINKS:
Click here for Cooling Center locations and how to beat the heat.
www.healthyairliving.com
Click here for www.abc30.com Homepage
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The fires burning around the state are sending a thick brown haze into the valley. Add to that the extreme heat which is causing dangerous gases -- like ozone -- to rise up from the ground level and into air.

Air quality experts say with no wind to push the pollution out of the valley ? the bad air sticks around.

Jaime Holt, Valley Air District: "Our worry is that these wildfires are occurring in the season, and if they continue to burn, and we continue to see smoke coming into the Valley, it's going to be a long, dirty summer."

Asthma and allergy Doctor Bill Ebbeling is telling every patient to stay indoors as much as possible.

Dr. Bill Ebbeling, Fresno Physician: "This excessive heat is like working in an oven. You'll bake and it can cause all kinds of problems with the insine systems of the body. Ozone can damage the lung tissue itself and the particulate matter may go all the way through into the bloodstream and lodge into the body."

It's no coincidence this week is healthy air living week. Over a thousand individuals and 100 businesses have already signed these pledge cards promising the valley air district to make small changes -- like riding bikes or electric scooters to work or driving hybrid cars.

But in this dangerous heat ? Safety comes first.

Jaime Holt, Valley Air District: "We want people to do what they can for air quality but not at the expense of their health."

This year so far pollutants in the valley have reached unhealthy levels 8 times ? This time last year, there were only two days of unhealthy air.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
QUICK LINKS:
Click here for Cooling Center locations and how to beat the heat.
www.healthyairliving.com
Click here for www.abc30.com Homepage
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