A Spare the Air alert has been issued for Tuesday in the Bay Area, the fourth such alert issued this month for unhealthy air conditions, air district officials said.
The Bay Area Air Quality Management District issued the alert because of forecasted high temperatures and light winds that are expected to combine with motor vehicle exhaust to create unhealthy ozone accumulation in the region.
"Another heat wave serves as a reminder that we need to commute smarter every day to reduce smog and traffic gridlock," air district executive officer Jack Broadbent said in a statement.
Smog can cause throat irritation, congestion, chest pain and can trigger asthma or worsen bronchitis and emphysema.
High levels of ozone pollution are particularly harmful for young children, seniors and those with respiratory and heart conditions. Vigorous outdoor exercise should be undertaken only in the early morning hours when ozone concentrations are lower.
Among the measures Bay Area residents are urged to take on a Spare the Air day are:
Bike to work or around town
Take public transit
Carpool and consolidate your errands to reduce driving
Avoid using gas-powered lawn mowers and leaf blowers
Reduce household energy use
Avoid using lighter fluid on the barbecue
Avoid using aerosol spray cleaners, paints and hairspray
To find out when a Spare the Air alert is in effect, residents can register at sparetheair.org, call 800-HELP-AIR, download the Spare the Air smartphone app or follow Spare the Air on Facebook or Twitter.