The city of Sacramento voted Tuesday to ban leaf blowers on days when the air quality is unhealthy.
City Councilman Jeff Harris first floated the idea in February. The case against using both gas and also electric blowers on bad-air days is that they stir dust and particulate in the air, which can make asthma and other upper respiratory problems worse.
They're also noisy, although the city has rules on the books for when you can use leaf blowers — seldom enforced — such as no gas-powered leaf blowers near your home on Sundays before 10 a.m.
The new city ordinance, approved by City Council, will disallow leaf blowers on days when the air quality index is more than 100.
That measurement applies to smaller “2.5” particulate. The city estimates this could amount to more than 30 days a year, but possibly more if the wildfire season is bad, such as this year.
The city recognizes there could be negative economic impacts due to enforcement, especially for gardeners, and Harris has said the new rule should be educational at first.
Penalties will be $250 or more for a first offense, and $25,000 for each day the banned leaf-blowing continues.
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