Embassy of France in Chile communiqué on the fire that has occurred in the download of Santa Marta

Embassy of France in Chile communiqué on the fire that has occurred in the download of Santa Marta

As the inhabitants of Santiago have confirmed it, the fire that occurred in the Santa Marta garbage dump, located in the commune of San Bernardo near route 5 in the South-West of the city exit, has submerged the city in a thick foul-smelling cloud. This incident occur, the Ministry of health of Chile estimates when gases generated by this fire are not more toxic than a usual fire where organic materials are burned and not chemicals, therefore the risks for the health of the citizens are weak, have been announced the following recommendations on preventive measures:

-Refrain from all sporting activity
-Close doors and windows in case of presence of smoke outside
-Use a mask or a damp cloth when you exit to the street
-Move away from the area where the presence of smoke is important, especially in the case of vulnerable people (pregnant women, infants, children, seniors, people suffering from a disease or respiratory failure, among other conditions cardiopulmonary) and head towards a less polluted area

If you have been exposed to smoke, ask the health service in case of:

-Conjunctivitis or feeling of sand in the eyes
-Persistent cough
-Shortness of breath
-Breathing with wheezing
-Dizziness, vomiting, weakness
-Commitment of conscience (v. gr. somnolence, sopor)

If you have been exposed to fumes and no symptoms, we recommend you stay in your home. On the website of the Embassy of France in Chile, is a full statement, translated by the doctors of this Embassy.

However the consequences of this problem on the health of the inhabitants of Santiago is not subject to consensus among experts. The national press has noticed these various analyses

In addition the Chilean authorities, that they have acknowledged a delay of several days to extinguish the fire, however announced a significant reduction in emissions of smoke at night.
This Embassy invites you to be informed of developments in the situation and follow the recommendations as many as you can to your care.

Source: Dr. Edgardo Grob, doctor of the France Embassy in Chile, Professor of respiratory medicine, Univ. Austral of Chile and member of the Committee on environmental pollution, Chilean society of respiratory diseases

On this same premise, Dr. Manuel Oyarzún, specialist in respiratory diseases and biomedical effects of air pollution, academic of our Institute and coordinator of the Committee on environmental pollution of the Chilean society of Respiratory diseases says:

"The effects of air pollution by a pollutant given in general terms, depends of the"Effective dose" that has essentially 3 determinants: concentration (C), exhibition (Texpo) and ventilation time min: V' (the volume of air that mobilizes the respiratory system in a minute)

Or: effective dose = (C) · (Texpo) · (V')

Therefore, should try to shorten the exposure time extinguishing the emitting source as soon as possible. You have to measure the concentration of pollutants to estimate its potential toxicity and evaluate the possibility to move from the area to the most susceptible population and should avoid increasing minute ventilation, for example avoiding physical exercise especially outdoors.

Know the composition of the air pollution is also important, as it is known that gases and particles can interact promoting toxic effects depending on the nature of the gas. In this regard, it is important to note that at this time of the year the level of ozone in the air from the Metropolitan Region is usually high due to solar radiation, this increase in the concentration of ozone may increase the toxicity of particulate) PM2, 5). It is also important that persons involved in the fire have adequate personal protection measures, such as for example masks to avoid breathing dangerous levels of gases or particulate"