Dust particles in air exceeds tolerance limit, EMB says

By: Jose Santino S. Bunachita October 25,2015 - 05:45 PM

The amount of small dust particles in Metro Cebu’s air is still beyond the limit that can be tolerated by people, the regional Environmental Management Bureau (EMB-7) said Sunday afternoon.

Regional EMB Director William Cuñado said their 24-hour monitoring of the haze in the air that was visible in Metro Cebu showed that the amount of dust particles or particulate matter (PM) measured 2.5 micrometers in diameter.

He said the daily average amount of dust particles measurd 85.70 micrograms per normal cubic meter ( µg/Nm3) or above the 75 µg/Nm3 limit based on the National Ambient Air Quality Guideline Values of Republic Act 8749 or the Philippine Clean Air Act. Cuñado called on local government units to come up with a resolution to allocate a budget for the purchase of N95 masks for their constituents.

The EMB-7 wrote to all governors in Central Visayas containing the latest ambient air quality monitoring data in Metro Cebu.

The letter will serve as guide for the governors to mandate their local chief executives to issue health advisories to their constituents.

“Prevention first para mas daghan ang ma-save nga mga tawo (so a lot of people will be saved),” Cuñado said. He said the EMB 7 will continue its 24-hour monitoring of dust particles until the smaze in Cebu is confirmed to be gone.

HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF AGAINST PARTICLE POLLUTION

1. Secure an N95 dust mask to protect yourself against PM10 and PM2.5 pollutants. The N95 dust mask can be purchased from leading hardwares in Metro Cebu.

2. Wear eye goggles and other personal protective equipment (PPEs).

3. If you cannot buy the N95 dust mask, wet a hanky or towel to cover your nose and mouth. Make sure to keep the hanky or towel always wet so that the particulate matter will not get into your lungs, or even your bloodstream. Always bring a bottle of water you can use to wet your hanky or towel. Replace your hanky every hour.

4. Stay indoors. Always keep your windows and doors closed. · Avoid unnecessary travels and traffic jams. · Do not jog nor run outside as the body ingests more pollutants when active.

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