SF Bay Area Air Quality Has Hit Beijing Levels Due to Fires - Going to Get Worse

If you live in the Bay Area, get a mask.

Some people wore masks as they walked or rode their bikes to work—an uncommon sight in the Bay Area. 

"These fires are bringing Beijing to the Bay Area and are allowing us to see what they experience around the clock," says Richard Muller, a UC Berkeley professor of physics who co-founded the site Berkeley Earth, which tracks air quality around the globe with an interactive map. 

On the morning of Oct. 12, the amount of particulate matter in the area in some parts of San Francisco were in the 151-200 range on the air quality index, matching that in Beijing.

"We're seeing the worst air quality ever recorded in many parts of the Bay Area," Flannigan told SFGATE earlier this week. "The entire Bay Area population is likely being affected by the smoke."
Brian Garcia, also a meteorologist with NWS, agreed.
"We're going to see a really strong settling of the smoke in the Bay Area on Friday and Saturday," he said. "Not to mince words. It's going to be really bad. It's not going to be fun."

Got a notification on my phone earlier this evening that the NFL is looking into possibly moving the Raiders-Chargers game in Oakland on Sunday. I didn't even think about that, but it makes sense seeing how bad the air is in the Bay Area.


Rapid Response Threadmaker
Is this where I insert a comment asserting that East Coast is best coast?

That really sucks. Hopefully they can get these fires under control.
For like a month Vancouver/Seattle/Portland area was also Beijing level bad. Was crazy. Smelled bad, persistent haze, ash on windshields. Imagine all that in your lungs. Makes you wonder what it would be like having to have this daily.


One day I realized that sadness is just another word for not enough coffee.
Good comic, but this is because of the wildfires.
The wildfires are exacerbated by climate change iirc, like hurricanes on the east coast. Basically any meteorological disaster will be amplified by the increasingly volatile climate.
Fortunately I've always had a good, strong respiratory system and no allergies or anything so I feel fine. My eyes are pretty sensitive though and have been bothering me.
Good comic, but this is because of the wildfires.
Presumed to be exacerbated by climate change. Both our unusually heavy rainfall (that led to increased underbrush growth) followed by a heatwave that broke every record on file (which dried it all out) and drought conditions. The Diablo wind then comes in from the East, growing in speed and warmth as it compresses.

This isn't normal.
Is this where I insert a comment asserting that East Coast is best coast?

That really sucks. Hopefully they can get these fires under control.
You know how this works. West Coast Best Coast, East Coast Least Coast.
Fortunately I don't live up there but I do live close to another big recent fire and shit looked apocalyptic all day, there was ash everywhere.

It really says a lot about Beijing that it took this much smoke and fire just to rival their air quality.
Beijings air must be pretty damn shitty.
Well, yeah:
And yet denial still persists. Many Beijingers tend to use the word “wumai” (meaning haze), rather than “wuran” (pollution), to describe the poor air quality – and not just because it’s the official Newspeak of weather reports. It’s partly because, one local tells me, “if we had to face up to how much we’re destroying the environment and our bodies every day, it would just be too much.” A recent report by researchers in Shanghai described Beijing’s atmosphere as almost “uninhabitable for human beings” – not really something you want to be reminded of every day.

One thing a lot of people don't know is that something like 20% of the west coast's sulfate pollution is now blowing over from China.
Oh, I guess that I'm not going to the de Young Museum this weekend. I guess that I'll go somewhere else in the Bay Area.

*sees image*

Welp, I guess everywhere will be shit.
N95 masks are pretty much sold out as of today. Harder to find than SNES Classics.

Not permanent, but not just a one day thing either.
Yep can't find any. Didn't want to pay $25 for a 20 pack either. Starting to think I should skip the concert in SF I was going to tonight since I don't have a mask.
Unfortunately this seems to be the new normal. Watch the first 15-20 mins of Fire Chasers on Netflix. The whole series is good but the discussion of how much more favorable the conditions are for these quickly spreading intense fires to take place is wild.

I live in Texas, but you all have one hell of an ally in this fight with CalFire
Is that just a normal day?
No. Beijing has some brutal days that are like this but it's usually not so bad really. I was working there a couple years ago when the AQI was up over 500, that was really bad and this picture probably represents a day with AQI around that amount. This year everytime I've been to Beijing actually has been really nice except for a day or two here and there with some smog.
I work in SF and my walk from the train station is about 22 minutes.

Earlier in the week my eyes were burning and I had a cough and runny nose by the time I got to the office.

I've been there every day since and today I haven't been feeling good at all.
I live in NM and I know the feeling of it being smokey. Shit sucks, and I hope ya'll in CA are doing well. Fire season blows : (
Yep, as soon as I walked outside this morning for work, the smell of smoke hit me immediately here in SF. I can't even imagine how bad it must be for folks further north from us. :(
Well since I wasn't able to get a n95 mask decided to skip the concert in the city :(. Would rather be out $18 rather than walk outside without the proper protection. Coachella wrecked me for nearly a month this year so I know breathing in even worse air isn't worth it. Here in east bay just stepping outside and I could already feel my eyes getting itchy.