MODESTO -- Rising ozone levels throughout the valley are causing air quality to deteriorate, and air officials urge residents to take protective measures where necessary.
Typical summer meteorological conditions are ideal for ozone (smog) formation, which officials expect to continue through today.
The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District has developed a tool to help residents stay informed about air quality in their area.
The Real-Time Air Advisory Network is a free, automated data delivery service that links the subscriber's computer to an air monitor of choice. For more information and to subscribe, visit www.valleyair.org/programs/raan/raan_landing.htm.
"This is, unfortunately, typical summer air quality in the valley. Folks need to take precautions to protect their health and to take steps to reduce their emissions," said district spokesman Jaime Holt.
Ozone is created when emissions "cook" in heat and sunlight, and it peaks during the late afternoon and early evening. It can exacerbate conditions such as asthma and cause symptoms including sore throat, cough and fatigue.
Residents can reduce smog-forming emissions by:
Refraining from idling their vehicles
Car-pooling or using alternate transportation
Refraining from using drive-through services