Thursday 2 July, 2020

EMA warns of unhealthy air quality levels

The Environmental Management Authority said it has registered unhealthy air quality levels in Trinidad and Tobago and is warning the public to take precautions. 

The warning comes after the Trinidad and Tobago Meteorological Service warned of a concentration of Saharan dust over the weekend. 

The Environmental Management Authority issued a statement on Friday evening that the Air Quality Index registered UNHEALTHY at 4:30 pm on Friday at the Monitoring Stations of the Environmental Management Authority (EMA) in Point Lisas and Signal Hill.

Air Quality Index (AQI)

The air quality index is a number used by government agencies to communicate to the public how polluted the air currently is or how polluted it is forecast to become. As the AQI increases, an increasingly large percentage of the population is likely to experience increasingly severe adverse health effects.

The EMA said increased aggravation of respiratory symptoms in sensitive groups including older adults, children, and people with respiratory ailments and allergies; increased aggravation of heart or lung disease and premature mortality in people with heart or lung disease; increased respiratory effects in general population.

As a result, people with heart or lung disease, older adults, children, and people with respiratory ailments and allergies should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion; everyone else should reduce prolonged or heavy exertion. 

People with respiratory issues should keep their medication handy and avoid undue exposure to the outdoors at this time. 

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