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KCBX News Update: Burn season starts in SLO County, and UC Davis pediatrician warns of increasing COVID cases in children

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Burn season begins again in SLO County

Burn season has opened in San Luis Obispo County as of today, according to SLO County Fire and CalFire.

Recent rainfall and vegetation moisture levels led the agencies to open the season up in the new year.

That means residents who live in a single-family or duplex unit outside of a city can burn dry weeds, plants, shrubbery, tree trimming and branches with a permit.

The burn season lasts typically until the end of April, or whenever fire agencies see an increasing risk of wildfire from vegetation drying up.

Residents can apply for a permit at slocleanair.org.

Pediatrician warns of rising COVID cases among children due to Omicron

Cases of the COVID-19 Omicron variant are on the rise. Doctor Dean Blumberg is chief of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at UC Davis Health.

He said the number of children admitted to the hospital is starting to tick up, though the increase is not as severe as last summer’s surge.

But Blumberg said that doesn’t mean children aren’t at risk.

“There is no vaccine available for children less than five, and so they remain vulnerable to infection. And for the five to 11-year olds, we only had a recent recommendation for immunization and we only have about 25 percent vaccination rate in that group,” Blumberg said.

According to Blumberg, the low rate likely means pediatric cases will continue to rise. And while COVID tends to be less severe in children, Blumberg said thousands have been hospitalized and over 1,000 have died.

This story came to us from CapRadio News.

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Benjamin Purper came to KCBX in May of 2021 from California’s Inland Empire, where he spent three years as a reporter and Morning Edition host at KVCR in San Bernardino. Dozens of his stories have aired on KQED’s California Report, and his work has broadcast on NPR's news magazines, as well. In addition to radio, Ben has worked as a newspaper reporter and freelance writer.
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