Is it safe to go outside? Southern California fires, dust, winds torpedo air quality in your area – OCRegister

Between the new Silverado fire in Orange County and the still-burning El Dorado fire in San Bernardino and Riverside counties and Bobcat fire in Los Angeles County, high winds Monday were kicking up enough dust and smoke to make the air quality hazardous in some areas of Southern California.

Crews battle the Silverado Fire along The 133 Freeway near Irvine Boulevard in Irvine, CA, on Monday, October 26, 2020. (Photo by Jeff Gritchen, Orange County Register/SCNG)

RELATED: 60,000 told to evacuate as Silverado fire quickly swells to 2,000 acres

On Sunday, the South Coast Air Quality Management District issued a windblown dust advisory for portions of Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties that is set to last through Tuesday evening.

The advisory says that inhalable particles known as PM10 — those that measure 10 micrometers in diameter and smaller — will be present in quantities that will make the air quality unhealthy for sensitive persons in many areas of the three counties.

That was before the Silverado fire broke out. The Orange County blaze grew to 2,000 acres by Monday afternoon. Along with the winds and smoke from other fires, it took air quality in much of Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside counties — and Los Angeles County as well — into the hazardous range.

As of 1:30 p.m. Monday, AQMD readings showed the following air quality:

  • Moderate in northern San Bernardino County and portions of Riverside County
  • Unhealthy for sensitive persons in eastern LA County, the Angeles National Forest and portions of northern LA County
  • Unhealthy in greater Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley and the South Bay
  • Very unhealthy in metropolitan San Bernardino County, the San Gorgonio and Banning passes and the Coachella Valley
  • Hazardous in the Ontario and Pomona areas, Orange County, Long Beach and the Murrieta, Perris, Temecula and Lake Elsinore areas

For the latest air quality readings, check the interactive map at AQMD.gov.

Fires sprout up off Portola Parkway in Irvine where smoke from the Silverado fire fills the sky on Monday, October 26, 2020. (Photo by Mindy Schauer, Orange County Register/SCNG)

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