The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality is issuing a high pollution advisory for coarse particulate matter (PM-10) -- microscopic dust particles -- effective Friday.
Forecasted winds with gusts up to 50 mph in some areas have prompted the advisory. Air quality forecasters say a cold front is expected to sweep across the region on Friday, with strong winds developing mid-morning. Blowing dust is likely to occur across a large portion of the state, including Maricopa County.
"Please consider stabilizing loose dirt on any open lots or fields. Minimize off-road driving or driving on dirt roads," said Air Quality Department director Bill Wiley.
With the advisory in place, contractors cannot use leaf blowers at governmental properties, hotels, or restaurants, and residents must refrain from burning wood in indoor fireplaces and outdoor fire pits. Off-highway vehicles are prohibited from being used.
Children and adults with respiratory problems should avoid outdoor activities on Friday and the general public should limit outdoor activity throughout the day.