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ABQ issues health alert due to blowing dust

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Today’s high winds and resulting blowing dust have prompted the city to issue a health alert for people with respiratory conditions.

The alert is in effect through 8 p.m. today.

“Blowing dust contributes to particulate pollution,” says the Environmental Health Department’s Air Quality Program. “People who are sensitive to blowing dust, such as those with asthma, chronic bronchitis and other respiratory and heart diseases, are encouraged to limit outdoor activity. Children and older adults may also be affected by particulate pollution. Schools and senior citizen facilities may want to provide indoor activities to minimize exposure to elevated outdoor particulate levels.”

People sensitive to particulate pollution should do the following, the advisory reads:

■ Keep windows and doors closed. If needed for comfort, use air conditioners or heating systems on recycle/recirculation mode.

■ Limit your time spent outdoors.

■ If symptoms of heart or lung disease occur, (including shortness of breath, chest tightness, chest pain, palpitations or unusual fatigue) contact your health care provider.

■ Individuals with heart or lung disease should follow their health management plan from their health care provider.

■ Asthmatic individuals should follow a prescribed asthma management plan.

■ Avoid outdoor exercise.