The Southwest Clean Air Agency is extending Clark County’s burn ban until noon Tuesday.
The ban, which started Wednesday, was set to expire at 5 p.m. Friday. Smoke from wood burning led authorities to prohibit use of fireplaces and uncertified wood stoves and inserts and ban outdoor burning in the county.
If wood burning is your only source of heat, you are exempt from ban, but the agency asks that people burn as clean as possible, according to a release.
The National Weather Service is forecasting stagnant air conditions to persist into the upcoming week with showers predicted for Friday night and Saturday, which should improve conditions slightly for the weekend. A weak disturbance expected on Saturday could temporarily improve air quality, but it is expected to deteriorate and return to unhealthy levels by early next week.
Smoke inhalation can cause a range of health problems, including chest pain, fast heartbeat, coughing, stinging eyes, trouble breathing, irritated sinuses, headaches and asthma attacks.
Those particularly sensitive to fine-particle air pollution include children, older adults, pregnant women, people who have had strokes, and those with heart ailments or lung problems, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Officials recommend these people stay indoors when possible, limit outdoor running, bicycling, physical labor and sports, and avoid driving, if possible. If people from one of these groups must drive, they should keep the windows closed and make sure their vehicle recirculates air from inside, not outside. Schools and day care providers should consider postponing outdoor activities or moving them indoors.
Current air quality information is available online at www.swcleanair.org/burning/airquality.asp.