Poor air quality blankets Bay Area for fifth consecutive day

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- A Spare the Air Alert is in effect Tuesday and another one has been called for Wednesday.

Thick haze has been hanging over the Bay Area like a dirty blanket, obscuring Sutro Tower and the hills of San Francisco.

On a normal day, it's possible to see Oakland, but not lately and not Tuesday.

"We see particulate matter, the pollutants we are worried about building up where we have stagnant air like we have right now in the entire Bay Area," Air Quality Management District spokesperson Lisa Fasano.

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District is using equipment to test the air.

Infra-red cameras can spot things undetectable by the human eye, such as microscopic particles about 1/25 the size of
a human hair, particles that can lodge deep in people's lungs. Dangerous pollutants to children, the elderly, people who work and play outside and many others.

"Anyone who has respiratory conditions like asthma, COPD, emphysema, anything like that or right now the common cold," Fasano said.

It's been the fifth consecutive day of foul air and people are starting to take notice.

"We breathe and we want to breathe clean air as possible so we can have better health," Doug Avalos, San Francisco resident said.

"I've been taking photos all day of the city and you can barely see Berkeley from the Golden Gate Bridge. pretty bad," Brandan David, a tour guide said.

Amber Charland moved to Idaho six months ago. "I came back and I was extremely surprised by the cloud of pollution you can see coming into the area. It's pretty thick," Charland said. "It's pretty heavy and definitely a little bit claustrophobic on the choking side."

What's needed are heavy winds or rain or something to clear all this bad air, but the question is when.
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