Planning on greeting the weekend by relaxing in front of your wood-burning fireplace Friday? Better think again, says the South Coast Air Quality Management District.
Friday has been declared a no-burn day for residents of Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. That means residents are prohibited from burning wood or manufactured fire logs in their fireplaces from midnight Thursday to midnight Friday.
- Not sure if you can light your fireplace? Enter your zip code here to find out.
Mountain communities above 3,000 feet in elevation are exempt from the program, as are homes that rely on wood as a sole source of heat, low-income households and those without natural gas service.
People caught burning wood in their fireplaces during a no-burn alert face fines, according to an email from the AQMD. First-time violators can be fined $50, though they may attend a wood smoke awareness course in lieu of paying the fine. On the second violation, the fine increases to $150, or the resident may install a dedicated gas-fueled fireplace. Third-time violators will be either fined $500 or forced to fund a project that will benefit the environment.
Multiple violations are accrued during individual wood-burning seasons from November through February. To report a suspected violation, call 800-288-7664 or visit aqmd.gov.
-- Nicole Mooradian and City News Service contributed to this report.