Middle East dust storm.
According to an announcement, the average hourly concentration of dust particles in the atmosphere was high, ranging from 25 to 191μg/m³ (microgrammes per cubic metre). “It is therefore expected that the average 24-hour level is likely to exceed the safe level of 50μg/m³ which is fixed under the relevant legislation,” it said.
“Due to the small size of particles and the possible negative effects on human health, members of the public, particularly vulnerable population groups – children, the elderly and patients – are advised to avoid spending time outside until the phenomenon subsides,” the announcement said.
It also recommended that people working outdoors use appropriate means of personal protection, and urged employers to take all necessary measures to protect their staff [Source]
As heavy winds continue to lash Cyprus, swirling dust particles through the air and into homes, cars and schools, Know Your Doctor advises residents to take the following precautions:
1) Keep the dust at bay by not going outside, especially during high winds or low visibility when the dust levels are particularly harmful. Avoid outdoor exercise. Keep your windows and doors closed.
2) Cover your nose and mouth with a mask or damp cloth to reduce inhalation of particles of dust if/when going out.
3) When driving, keep windows closed – opt for air conditioning instead of fresh air. If visibility is low, drive slower.
4) Avoid rubbing your eyes in order to prevent eye infection, which is common during this season. Wear protective gear such as airtight goggles. If your eyes become irritated, rinse with water. Be especially careful if you wear contact lenses.
5) Always carry a supply of water to keep from being dehydrated.
6) Those with bad allergies should start using antihistamines during this season, even before the symptoms start. [Source]