July 4 fireworks create poor air quality throughout Southern California

An air quality advisory is in effect Monday throughout Southern California due to Fourth of July firework displays.

The poor air quality in the Los Angeles area comes after a night of both sanctioned and illegal firework displays that lit up the sky Sunday night, leaving high levels of particulate matter in the air.

July 4 and July 5 are typically among the worst days of the year for fine particulate matter levels in the South Coast Air Basin, according to the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

Breathing the particles can lead to a variety of cardiovascular and respiratory issues like heart attacks, asthma, decreased lung function, coughing or difficulty breathing.

Regulators had warned that the Air Quality Index may reach unhealthy levels due to the fireworks.

By Monday morning, the worst of the air pollution was in the Pomona Valley, San Gabriel Valley and Inland Empire areas, which were listed under the “very unhealthy” category. That means the air quality index was so high, everyone in the area was at risk of experiencing more serious health effects.

The San Fernando Valley, Glendale, Pasadena, Arcadia, Baldwin Park and Chino Hills areas were all under the “unhealthy” air quality category. People in those areas may begin to experience some adverse health effects, while those in sensitive groups may get more serious effects, according to the South Coast AQMD.

Residents in those areas who have heart or lung disease, children and older residents were all told to avoid all outdoor physical activity. And everyone in the area should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion Monday.

In Orange County, the Fullerton and Anaheim areas were seeing an air quality that’s unhealthy for sensitive groups, but conditions were considerate moderate in the county overall.

Coastal areas throughout the region fared better, with good-to-moderate air quality conditions.

Officials said backyard fireworks typically contribute to the air pollution, and personal exposure to the fireworks may create local fine particulate matter concentrations much higher than regional values.

As the region sees poor air quality, regulators recommended that the public avoid all wood burning, including at the beaches.

Another air quality advisory is in effect through Monday afternoon due to smoke from the Tumbleweed Fire burning south of Gorman.

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