'Sand Fire': Smoke advisory issued for parts of LA County as smoke, ash fills sky

- With smoke and ash filling the sky from the fast-moving Sand Fire, air quality regulators today issued a smoke advisory for many parts of Los Angeles County that will remain in effect until at least midnight Sunday.

The South Coast Air Quality Management District issued the advisory for the San Fernando, San Gabriel and Santa Clarita valleys, the San Gabriel Mountains, the Pomona/Walnut Valley and the central Los Angeles area.

The agency said those areas are susceptible to direct smoke impact and unhealthy air quality, and issued the following recommendations:

--Avoid strenuous activity, indoors or outdoors.
--Those with respiratory ailments or heart disease, children and the elderly are advised to stay indoors.
--Keep windows and doors closed.  
--Run your air conditioner, but keep the fresh intake closed and the filter clean, to avoid bringing additional smoke inside.
--Don't use swamp coolers to whole-house fans, to avoid bringing smoke inside.
--Don't use wood-burning fireplaces or appliances.

The fire, which has burned at least 5,500 acres, broke out at 2:10 p.m. Friday near Sand Canyon Road along the northbound Antelope Valley (14) Freeway.

The blaze is at zero percent containment as more than 300 firefighters battle the flames from the ground and air, according to the Los Angeles County Fire Department.

Residents are reporting smoke-filled air and falling ash in many parts of the greater Los Angeles area, and at least one building is believed to have been damaged or destroyed.

The blaze was fueled by triple-digit temperatures along with gusty winds on Friday, and today smoke was moving southeast, toward Los Angeles.

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