Sonora, CA — The Rim Fire smoke in downtown Sonora was heavy this morning, affecting residents throughout the area.
Tuolumne County Health Officer, Dr. Todd Stolp says when visibility is less than one mile it is unhealthy to be outside. The Air Pollution Control Officer and the Health Department continue to recommend that people avoid vigorous outdoor activity when visibility in the surrounding area is less than five miles. Dr. Stolp says, when visibility is below one mile spend as little time as possible outdoors. A full Air Quality Alert from Dr. Stolp is listed as a blog here. Mark Twain Medical Center Chief Nurse Officer Joanne Jeffers says, “The good news, up to now, is that we have not seen an increase in patients that we can attribute to the Rim Fire Smoke.” Stolp confirms that in Tuolumne County there has not been an excessive number of severe respiratory problems reported at this time.
While many outside events are canceled the Sonora Farmers Market is in full swing in downtown Sonora. Sonora Certified Farmers Market Supervisor Erin O’Hare says, “We wanted to keep things as normal as possible for the community. The producers and venders had vegetables to harvest and they need to sell them.” She says, “Everyone seems happy we are open and most of the talk from everyone is about the fire.”
Mike Dawton of Sonora says, “We are confident the fire fighters will get it out, that the emergency services will take care of it. They are doing a fantastic job and we are all encouraged.” His wife Sheri Dawton says there are moments of anxiety thinking about the possibility of hosting evacuated friends and then maybe having to evacuate her own house as well as friends stay with them.