In Lois Henry's column on July 3 about the Fourth of July fireworks ("July 4th in Bakersfield: firefighters in flak jackets"), she spoke of the particulate matter. That air quality reading isn't up for only one day.
In our neighborhood, fireworks begin in June and last the entire month of July, with explosions occurring almost every day. They continue sporadically until November. Then it begins again in December until the middle of January. So, you see, our health is at stake for more than one day a year due to fireworks. Sadly, I believe, only a tragedy on the scale of the Boston Marathon bombing or the fires in Arizona will wake up our city to ban them.