For Immediate Release
Press Contact: Mary Kay Clunies-Ross, PIO, (510) 867-1622


Berkeley, California (Monday, August 06, 2012) - August 7, 2012 0900 UPDATE: The Richmond refinery fire is under control, and the shelter-in-place advisory for the affected Contra Costa County areas has been lifted. 

In general, Berkeley residents will not need to limit their outdoor activities. However, it is still possible that individuals with underlying respiratory conditions (such as asthma or emphysema) may experience increased respiratory symptoms. Anyone experiencing symptoms, or with specific medical questions, should seek medical attention from his or her usual source of care.

(August 6, 2012: 2300) There is a fire at the Chevron Refinery in Richmond. There is a shelter-in-place order for Richmond, North Richmond, and San Pablo.

There is currently no shelter-in-place order for Berkeley. Berkeley’s Public Health and Toxic’s Divisions recommend that people who smell smoke, even if not in a shelter-in-place area, should stay inside with windows and doors closed, and air conditioners turned off. This is especially important for people with respiratory conditions. Concerned residents may want to follow the same precautions overnight tonight, even without smelling smoke.

All residents are advised to avoid the shelter-in-place areas until the shelter-in-place advisory is lifted. Smoke can cause eye, throat, and respiratory irritation and can aggravate breathing problems such as asthma. Anyone experiencing acute respiratory symptoms should seek medical attention promptly.

More information is available at:

Contra Costa County health department:

Bay Area Air Quality Management District:

Shelter-in-Place instructions:

This webpage will be updated as more information becomes available.