Meteorologists are issuing an upcoming health warning – here’s a link to a Mazarron Hoy article, excerpts translated below
Three days with Saharan dust above the health risk threshold
A burst of Saharan air in the next few hours will bring high concentrations of Saharan dust into the air. In many cases, it will exceed the threshold for health risk proposed by the WHO.
In recent hours, a subtropical air mass loaded with Saharan dust has surged over the Mediterranean Sea and will soon embrace the entire peninsula and the Balearic Islands. The concentrations of these small particles can pose a health risk in various areas of our country, as meteorologist experts warn below.
“A significant influx of airborne dust has been set in motion, channelled by a low pressure centre over Morocco and another high pressure centre that affects Libya and the interior of North Africa. Under these conditions, the intense south wind blowing in the southern part of Algeria, it is managing to lift endless particles of sand and Saharan dust. Ultimately, the DANA in the Moroccan vertical is serving as a conveyor belt for the air laden with suspended dust, which reaches the Peninsula and Balearic Islands”.
: “in these Saharan dust intrusions, the fine PM10 particulate enters the respiratory tract”
“The new intrusion of Saharan dust will have a negative impact on people’s health, by exceeding the 50 ug / m3 that Community regulations (Directive 2008/50 / EC) set as a threshold. Above it, prolonged exposure to that air carries risks to the population, mainly the most vulnerable, which is the one that suffers from chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma or bronchitis “.
“Faced with an episode of this magnitude, the use of masks, particularly FFP2, which now due to the pandemic we use on a day-to-day basis, is a good preventive measure.”
“For a few days, the winds from the southeast have prevailed, logically dragging particles from the Sahara desert, appreciated in the cloudy environment that surrounds us. Being dry and warm air affects our health in some aspects. In my case, for example, I notice it in the eyes.”
“As the meteorological memory is very fragile, we may not remember if this has happened before or with relative frequency.”