This year's smog season, which ended Thursday in the Los Angeles region, was comparable to last year's, which was the cleanest in the 40 years that records have been kept, air quality regulators said Friday.
Stage 1 alerts were called on 46 days between the beginning of May and the end of October. That was slightly more than the 41 days in 1990 when the Stage 1 ozone level--0.2 parts per million--was reached at at least one monitoring station in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties. But the region experienced 125 days above the federal ozone standard of 0.12 parts per million, five fewer than last year.
The two years "looked very, very similar," said Joe Cassmassi, senior meteorologist for the South Coast Air Quality Management District. The area's air is still by far the most polluted in the United States.