Bay Area residents are being asked not to burn wood Thursday, but it's not being declared illegal, according to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District.
Air district officials said that offshore winds have caused increased particulate pollution levels in the northeastern Bay Area, prompting them to call for residents to voluntarily refrain from burning wood. However, they stopped short of calling for a Winter Spare the Air Day, which would have banned it.
Air district officials said though that burning wood could cause air quality to deteriorate further and lead to a Winter Spare the Air Day.
"Air quality is worse than expected today, and in order to prevent air pollution levels from continuing to rise, we are asking Bay Area residents to voluntarily refrain from wood burning," air district executive officer Jack Broadbent said in a statement.
The Winter Spare the Air season started on Saturday and will continue through Feb. 28.
Anyone burning wood as fuel during the season is required to check whether a ban is in place for that day on the air district websites at www.baaqmd.gov or www.sparetheair.org or by calling a hotline at (877) 4-NO-BURN.
Bay Area residents asked not to burn wood
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