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High pollution warning in Northern Ireland

Department of Environment warns residents over pollution episode in Derry/Londonderry

The Northern Ireland Executive yesterday (November 25) issued a health warning to residents in Derry/Londonderry, after very high levels of particulate matter were discovered in the area.

Derry has seen high pollution levels over the last 24 hours, the Department of Environment has said

Derry has seen high pollution levels over the last 24 hours, the Department of Environment has said

And, high levels of air pollution are forecast across Northern Ireland until Friday. It is thought that the spike in air pollution has been caused by the cold, calm weather conditions, leading to a build up in emissions from vehicles and home heating.

People with lung or heart diseases have been advised to reduce the time they spend outdoors, or to avoid busy congested streets.

The Department of Environment has also advised residents that avoiding lighting bonfires or reducing vehicle traffic to essential journeys may help to alleviate the problem.

In its statement on the pollution episode, the DoE, said: “When pollution is high, sensitive people may notice their symptoms worsen and may need to act to reduce the symptoms or their exposure to the pollution.

“Asthmatics will find that their symptoms will ease through use of their relief inhaler in the usual way advised by their doctor. Others affected by the pollution may wish to reduce the time they spend outdoors or avoid busy, congested streets. If symptoms persist, affected people should consult with their doctor.â€?

The Department is also providing residents with hourly updates on levels of particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5), sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide, ozone and carbon monoxide via its website as well as a free-phone help-line 0800 556 677 offering health advice to those who may be particularly sensitive to air pollution.

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