LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Southern California regulators have issued an air quality advisory for Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties ahead of the Fourth of July holiday.

“Fireworks are known to emit high levels of particulate matter as well as metal air pollutants, all of which can contribute to negative health effects,” the South Coast Air Quality Management District said in its advisory. “In fact, the Fourth of July holiday is typically among the worst days of the year for fine particulate matter in the South Coast Air Basin.”

According to the advisory, in effect Saturday and Sunday, the Air Quality Index could reach the Very Unhealthy category or higher due to fireworks set off for Independence Day.

“Personal exposure to ‘backyard’ fireworks can create local fine particulate matter and further increase how much air pollution a person is breathing,” the advisory said. “Breathing of fine particulate matter can lead to a wide variety of cardiovascular and respiratory health effects.”

The advisory said those with heart or lung disease, older adults and children were at greater risk for adverse effects and should consider reducing or avoiding outdoor physical activity.

Al fireworks that explode, shoot into the air or move along the ground are illegal to possess anywhere in the state. And though some Southern California municipalities allow the use of so-called safe and sane fireworks, officials noted there has been a spate of illegal firework use leading up to the holiday.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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