Important Alert – Increased Levels Of Saharan Dust In The Air

The Meteorological Office at the Maurice Bishop International Airport has issued a warning for increased levels of Saharan dust expected to affect the state of Grenada in the coming days.

According to the weather bulletin issued Sunday, a plume of Saharan Dust is expected to travel across the South Eastern Caribbean over the next few days.
Though the advisory forecast minimal impact, it highlighted that conditions can change over time and that 24 hour exposure can lead to moderate health concerns.

The Ministry of Health has encouraged the three vulnerable groups of people; children, the elderly and those living with respiratory and heart disease to have their medications on hand.

For people with Asthma ensure they have both preventer and reliever medications.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Medical Doctor Dr. Francis Martin is advising that the preventer medication be used before the dust arrives and if in need of further intervention, also use the reliever.

The Ministry also issued a warning for people living with skin conditions who may be susceptible to this condition to also be prepared.

Other precautionary measures that can be taken are:

·        Avoid outdoor activity. If you must go outside, spend as little time outside as possible.
·        Cover your nose and mouth with a mask or damp cloth to reduce exposure to dust particles.
·        Avoid vigorous exercise, especially if you have asthma, diabetes or a breathing-related condition.
·        Stay indoors
·        Stay in air-conditioned premises and vehicles

Asthmatic people or those who have a respiratory condition can develop the following symptoms: shortness of breath, coughing, wheezing, or chest pain.

Other atmospheric impacts expected are discomfort when touching objects and increased disposition of dust on vehicles and other items.

The National Disaster Management Agency (NaDMA) advises all to use every precautionary measure to guard against the harmful effects of the prevailing atmospheric conditions.