Air pollution monitors placed around lava flow

The Hawaii State Department of Health has installed three temporary particulate monitors to measure and inform residents on the Big Island of the air quality levels from the lava flow from Kilauea volcano. Two monitors are currently located in Pahoa and one in Leilani Estates.

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The Hawaii State Department of Health has installed three temporary particulate monitors to measure and inform residents on the Big Island of the air quality levels from the lava flow from Kilauea volcano. Two monitors are currently located in Pahoa and one in Leilani Estates.

These monitors may be relocated or additional monitors installed as the lava flow moves or additional breakouts occur, the department said Tuesday. The monitoring data and advisories may be viewed by clicking here.

The University of Hawaii, School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology has also developed a model to forecast the lava flow smoke in Puna. The smoke model can be viewed by clicking here.

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“Our monitoring data and smoke model will measure and predict air quality, but this information is no substitute for good judgment. People should consider for themselves how sensitive they are to smoke exposure and act accordingly, said Gary Gill, deputy director of Environmental Health. “The smoke impact at any place or time may change due to unpredictable wind and weather conditions.”

The department recommends that residents in smoke affected areas avoid outdoor activities or physical exertion. People with respiratory illness or heart disease, older adults and children are urged to avoid smoke exposure. Smoke may worsen symptoms for individuals who have pre-existing respiratory conditions, such as allergies, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Individuals that have these conditions should keep their medication refilled and use daily (controller) medication as prescribed. Anyone who feels they may need medication or medical attention should contact their physician.

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