BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Hazy days are the talk of the town and they aren’t going away anytime soon
Bakersfield residents are familiar with the gloomy smog but even so, it still can hurt you.
“Bad air quality days specifically with the wildfire smoke we do know, experts make it quite clear this can pose a health hazard,” Michelle Corson from Kern County Public Health said.
According to the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District the air in Kern County is rated 153 on the air quality index. That means it’s unhealthy and it’s going to stay that way until at least Thursday.
But it’s important for people to protect themselves.
“Small particle matter that goes into your lungs unfortunately damages your lungs over long periods of time and on very bad air quality days it’s like smoking cigarettes,” Kian Azimian the assistant medical director at the Memorial Hospital emergency room said.
People with preexisting respiratory issues like asthma, chronic bronchitis and cystic fibrosis need to play it extra safe until things clear up.
“For those folks when the air quality is really bad they need to try their best to be indoors,” Azimian said. “Hopefully with either HEPPA filters and also air purifiers are very helpful. Any N95 is very helpful.”
Through these smoggy days there has been an increase in the number of people seeking medical help for respiratory issues.
“Whenever you have a big fire or much lower air quality we definitely see a spike,” Azimian said. “You see it in kids with asthma and you’ll see it with people with the adults that have COPD. Especially with people going outdoors and exerting themselves.”
The air quality isn’t expected to get better until after Thursday but could get worse later this weekend.
To stay safe do what the health professionals say and stay indoors or if you do go outside limit the time and wear a mask.