EMB 7 on haze: Stay indoors

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CEBU CITY – Environment and Health officials advised the public as early as Thursday, Sept. 19, to stay indoors or use dust masks and eye goggles when outdoors.

This after haze was monitored covering parts of Metro Cebu at certain times of the day reached ‘unhealthy levels”.

The Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) 7 in its advisory said the haze caused by the raging forest fire in the Indonesian islands of Borneo and Sumatra was enhanced due to the “habagat” or southwest monsoon. The bureau said the southwest wind being blown from Australia and Indonesia pushes the smog from the foreign country to the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR).

“If you have nothing to do outside, stay indoors and always keep your windows and doors closed. Do not jog nor run outside as the body ingests more pollutants when active, the EMB-7 advisory reads.

Engineer Cindylyn Ochea, spokesperson of EMB-7 that real-time monitoring data for particulate matter (PM) 2.5 showed a reading of 56 micrograms per normal cubic meter (mg/m3), which is above the 50 mg/m3 safe ambient air quality guidelines on Wednesday.

She said the PM 2.5 is a particulate matter or a dust particle measuring 2.5 micrometers in diameter, which is about 3 percent the diameter of a human hair.

“Since they are so small and light, PM 2.5 tend to stay longer in the air than heavier particles,” she said in a statement sent to media.

“This increases the chances of humans and animals inhaling them into the bodies and might bypass the nose and throat and penetrate deep into the lungs. Some may even enter the circulatory system,” she warned.

She further explained that the normal reading of particulate matters is pegged at 5 to 10. However, the monitoring discovered its sudden upsurge to 20 until it reached 56 on Wednesday morning.

The Department of Health (DOH) in the region also released an advisory for the elderly, children. those with asthma adn other cardiovascular diseases must stay indoors with good ventilation, wear personal protective equipment such as masks and eye googles when outside and refrain from physical activities in extremely polluted areas. (Newsline.ph)

Be informed
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