Gusty winds prompt air officials to issue dust caution

January 24, 2014 

Gusty winds have prompted local air-pollution officials to issue a health cautionary statement through Friday for the western and southern portions of the San Joaquin Valley due to kicked-up dust.

“Winds may add to the burden of particulate matter already in the air basin and produce areas of localized blowing dust, which can result in unhealthy concentrations of particulate matter 10 microns and smaller (PM10),” The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District said in a news release. “Exposure to particulate pollution can cause serious health problems, aggravate lung disease, trigger asthma attacks and bronchitis, and increase risk of respiratory infections.

“Where conditions warrant, people with heart or lung disease should follow their doctors’ advice for dealing with episodes of particulate exposure. Additionally, older adults and children should avoid prolonged exposure or heavy exertion, depending on their local conditions.”

For more information, visit www.valleyair.org or call the Modesto district office at (209) 557-6400.

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