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Wildfire smoke settles over hazy Bay Area

Drifting smoke from wildfires in Lake County and elsewhere in Northern California has been reported in at least four Bay Area counties today, causing concerns for people with respiratory problems.

The Marin County Fire Department urged residents to use care if exercising outdoors, especially for those with breathing disorders.

In Solano County, Fairfield police called it a “smokey day…thanks to shifting winds from Lake County” via Twitter.

Police in Palo Alto said that no health advisories have been issued as a result of the drift smoke, which is expected to persist throughout the day.

Police in Redwood City also reported smoke from wildfires burning in Northern California.

Elsewhere in San Mateo County, drift smoke has been reported in Pacifica, Half Moon Bay and Woodside, according to the San Mateo County Office of Emergency Services.

Ryan Walbrun, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said that while the Rocky and Jerusalem fires in Lake County were still creating smoke, the majority of the smoke drifting into the Bay Area today is from wildfire activity in Trinity County, near the Oregon border.

That smoke was carried down through the Sacramento Valley by a north wind, according to Walbrun. With no storm on the immediate horizon, however, the smoke will likely linger in the Bay Area until carried out to sea by offshore breezes.

Walbrun said he wouldn’t expect any improvement Sunday with the fires and wind pattern:

“Hopefully if we get a little west wind by Monday afternoon that will start to filter things out.”

A Spare the Air Alert has been issued for Sunday due to concerns about smog, but a representative for the Bay Area Air Quality Management District said the wildfires were not a factor in that decision.

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