Lahore smog: How to protect yourself from toxic smog?

Lahore smog: How to protect yourself from toxic smog?

Adopt these precautionary measures to keep yourself safe from smog

For the past few days, Lahore city has turned into a gas chamber with entire city covered in smoke and surrounded by a toxic cloud of chemicals.

Air pollution in Lahore has shot up dangerous gases such as Carbon Monoxide, Nitrogen Dioxide and Sulphur-Dioxide which can cause harm and discomfort to humans.

The issue of air pollution needs urgent measures as Lahore is now among the most polluted cities in Asia.

As the winter descends, continuous dry weather with delayed rainfall conditions concentrate all the pollutants in the lower levels of the atmosphere. “Only rain would be able to decrease the dense smog in the city” according to chief meteorologist Mohammad Riaz of Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD).

Experts say the pollution in Lahore is mainly due to excessive emissions from industries and vehicles and fast disappearance of trees for development purposes. Ahmad Rafay Alam, an environmentalist, said that level of pollutants in Lahore was seven to 14 times higher than the WHO standards in different parts of Lahore during different seasons.

According to World Health Organization (WHO) as many as six million deaths in a year are linked to exposure to outdoor and indoor air pollution.

How can smog affect your health?

Exposure to smog can lead to several different types of short-term health problems such as:

  • Coughing and throat or chest irritation as smog can irritate your respiratory system.
  • Asthma symptoms can worsen as to high levels of ozone from smog can trigger asthma attacks.
  • Difficulty breathing and lung damage.

man wearing mask

How to protect yourself from toxic smog?

Doctors and experts have warned that smog may affect your health and suggest these precautionary measures to keep yourself safe:

  • Avoid Commuting: The commuters should avoid travelling and keep their car windows shut while driving on the road.
  • Mask: Wearinganti-smog masks is the protective gear to avoid hazardous levels of air pollution.
  • Air Purifiers: Get yourself a few air-purifiers for your home and car.
  • Residents should not expose themselves to smog and keep windows of their houses closed.
  • Stay hydrated: The easiest thing you can do is to stay hydrated. Your body needs to be hydrated for your eyes to produce the correct amount of tears. Experts suggest about eight glasses of water a day is sufficient.
  • Wear protective eye glasses: Protective goggles are great for providing your eyes with a basic protection from dust, debris, and air pollution.
  • Vulnerable people should stay indoors: Air pollution can cause serious health issues especially among children, elderly and pregnant women who are more prone to bronchial and lung infections.
  • Limit outdoor activities: Limit your outdoor activities as elevated ozone levels increase your chances of being affected by smog the longer you stay outside.
  • Stick to milder activities: Keep your activities milder on smoggy days as you have greater your chances of experiencing respiratory problems. It is better not to exercise, walk or play outdoors especially when pollution levels are high.
Children wearing mask to avoid smog

Children wearing mask to avoid smog

Necessary Precautions suggested for Government

  • Vacuum cleaning and sprinkling of water on roads.
  • Assign team to clear dust created from construction sites, outside houses, parks and generator gases.
  • Install mist fountains and air purifiers like in China.
  • Control on the burning at landfill sites, using piping and venting, to reduce uncontrolled toxic emissions at source.
  • Obtain methane gas and covering of landfills with inert material and alum sludge from water treatment plants.
  • Instead of vacuum cleaners, jet pressure pump technique should be used for water sprinkling on footpath edges, speed breakers and central verges.
  • Inform people about air and dust pollution and compel them to follow precautionary health measures.
Mist fountains and air purifiers can help reduce air pollution

Mist fountains and air purifiers can help reduce air pollution

About Sayyar Gul

Sayyar Gul is doing his MS Computational Sciences & Engineering from National University of Science and Technology. He is technology enthusiast with keen interest in new technological developments from around the world.
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