Not only is the area experiencing unhealthy air quality as a result of the El Dorado Fire but the hottest day on record for Idyllwild was Sept. 6. The temperature reached 104 degrees.
Gov. Gavin Newsom signed an emergency proclamation Sept. 3 to free up additional energy capacity amid extreme temperatures.
The California Independent System Operator (ISO) urges people to conserve energy in the afternoons and evenings. For more tips to conserve energy, visit https://www.flexalert.org/.
In a county press release regarding air quality, Dr. Cameron Kaiser, Riverside County public health officer, recommends that those who live in areas impacted by smoke and ash should avoid strenuous activity, remain indoors with the air conditioning on and windows and doors closed. Also, keep the indoor air fresh with a clean filtering system to prevent from bringing smoke inside.
“Residents in the San Gorgonio Pass and western Riverside County need to be aware of the risks of breathing unhealthy air and take steps to keep safe,” said Kaiser.
The county let residents and visitors know on Tuesday that the smoke and ash advisory was issued effective Sept. 8 until further notice.
The 11,000-plus-acre El Dorado Fire in San Bernardino County was 19% contained as of press time. The fire started around 10:20 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 5 in the El Dorado Ranch Park in Yucaipa.
Cal Fire released that the fire “burning near Oak Glen in San Bernardino County was caused by a smoke-generating pyrotechnic device used during a gender reveal party.”
The county also reminds people that “wildfire smoke can cause a range of health issues, which include burning eyes, runny nose, shortness of breath, scratchy throat, headaches and chest pains. Smoke can also worsen chronic heart and lung disease.”
“We have taken a number of precautions to ensure everyone is safe while they are evacuated,” said Bruce Barton, director of the County of Riverside Emergency Management Department. “In addition to sheltering away from smoke, we implemented expanded precautions to ensure evacuated residents are protected from COVID-19 with screening, physical distancing, sanitation stations and a number of other safety measures.”
Visit https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/7148/ for updates on the El Dorado Fire, and sign up for emergency alerts at www.RivCoReady.org/AlertRivCo.
For a list of cooling center locations, visit www.capriverside.org. Precautions are being taken at the facilities to limit the spread of COVID-19.