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Fireworks pollution dips from last year

The state Health Department reported that while Hawaii’s air quality degraded during the fireworks-punctuated New Year’s celebrations, there was less airborne particulate matter than the year before.

Levels of particulates exceeded the national standard only at a Pearl City monitoring station, health officials said in a statement released Tuesday.

Measurements taken at three other Oahu stations and one on Maui found particulate matter levels at or below the national standard.

A year ago, three stations on Oahu recorded particulate levels that exceeded the national standard.

Fine particulates can penetrate the lungs and aggravate existing respiratory conditions such as asthma, emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

New Mexico judge gets Hawaii post

A New Mexico federal magistrate judge has been named as a federal magistrate judge here, replacing Leslie Kobayashi, who recently was appointed as a U.S. district judge.

Richard Puglisi will start his new job on March 1, according to Sue Beitia, clerk of the U.S. District Court here.

Hawaii’s federal district court bench appointed Puglisi to the eight-year term from a list of five names submitted by a magistrate screening committee. More than 50 applied for the job.

Hawaii’s other federal magistrate judges are Barry Kurren and Kevin Chang.

Puglisi is the chief federal magistrate judge in Albuquerque, N.M.

North, west shores to see big waves

Surf is up on Oahu’s north and west shores, with 12- to 20-foot faces expected today.

All beaches except Pokai Bay are at extreme hazard level. Pokai Bay is at a high level.

A high surf advisory is in effect until 6 p.m. today for north- and west-facing shores of Oahu, Molokai and Maui. A high surf warning is in effect for the same period for Kauai and the Big Island.

Oahu lifeguards performed six rescues and gave 500 warnings about dangerous conditions yesterday on the North Shore, and issued 320 warnings with no rescues off Leeward Oahu.

The Da Hui Backyard Shootout surfing contest was held yesterday at Banzai Pipeline.


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