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Saharan smog moves away as levels in Dorset return to low
Updated 10:33am Thursday 3rd April 2014 in News
HIGH levels of air pollution which affected parts of Dorset yesterday have moved away.
Defra – the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs – uses a 10-point scale to measure air quality, with 1 being a ‘low’ risk of air pollution, and 10 ‘very high’.
Yesterday Bournemouth rated as an eight along with Christchurch, while Poole rated as seven.
Today Dorset is rated at a three, which means there are low levels of air pollution, although a haze has been seen hanging over the seafront.
A perfect storm of dust from the Sahara, emissions from the Continent, low south-easterly winds and domestic pollution has caused air quality to plummet in some parts of the country.
Particulate pollution has reached high and very high levels in south east, and Eastern regions today.
Dr Sotiris Vardoulakis of Public Health England said yesterday: “Whilst most people will not be affected by short term peaks in air pollution, some individuals, particularly vulnerable groups such as those with existing heart or lung conditions, may experience increased symptoms.”
He added that people with asthma may find they need to use their inhaler more often.
Adults and children with lung problems, adults with heart problems, and the elderly are advised to reduce strenuous physical exercise outside, particularly if they experience symptoms.
Likely physical symptoms of air pollution include sore eyes, a cough or a sore throat.
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