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Dust stirred up in Vernon, prompts advisory

The City of Vernon is under a dust advisory.
The City of Vernon is under a dust advisory. Global News

Dust is settling into Vernon and people with a specific set of health issues are being asked to limit their exposure.

A dust advisory was issued for Vernon because of high concentrations of coarse particulate matter that are expected to stay around until there is either a good rain, some dust suppression, or a change in traffic patterns, according to the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy and the Interior Health Authority.

Read more: Can more be done to prevent Vernon dust advisories?

“Levels tend to be highest around busy roads and industrial operations,” according to the notice.

“Exposure is particularly a concern for individuals with chronic conditions such as asthma, COPD, heart disease, and diabetes; respiratory infections such as COVID-19, pregnant women, infants, and older adults.”

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Persons with chronic underlying medical conditions or acute infections should postpone or reduce strenuous exercise until the advisory is lifted.

Click to play video: 'Vernon remains under dust advisory after 16 days' Vernon remains under dust advisory after 16 days
Vernon remains under dust advisory after 16 days – Mar 29, 2019

Anyone experiencing symptoms such as continuing eye or throat irritation, chest discomfort, shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing, should follow the advice of their health-care provider. Staying indoors helps to reduce particulate matter exposure.

Vernon dust advisories appear to be part of an increasing trend. In the last few years, Vernon has been living with dust advisories in the late spring and early summer for an increasing number of days.

One issue is that the relatively confined valley where Vernon is located tends to trap the dust. Another issue is vehicles disturbing the sand and gravel that was laid down during the winter to stop drivers from slipping, which has yet to be cleaned up.

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