Festivals leave people in state gasping for breath

Spike in CO, ozone levels; 13,769 emergency cases in 4 days.

By: Express News Service | Ahmedabad | Published:November 3, 2016 2:39 am

This festive season, people in the state were left gasping for breath, with pollution levels rising to record high. Diwali, Gujarati New Year and Bhai Dooj resulted into extremely high levels of poisonous gases, including carbon monoxide and ozone, in Ahmedabad city. This made it difficult for the residents to breathe. There was an increase in complaints from patients suffering from respiratory disorders from different parts of the state.

As per the comparative data compiled by the Central Pollution Control Board data, Carbon Monoxide (CO) levels in Ahmedabad touched 5.73 mg/m3 against the average value of 3.08 mg/m3 on October 29, increasing from 2.92 on October 28.

This slightly came down to 4.24 on Diwali, though still remaining more than the average value. On the Gujarati New Year on October 31, it touched 2.18, followed by 2.12 on Bhai Dooj and 1.29 on Wednesday.

Ozone levels were remarkably high on Bhai Dooj; it was the highest on Wednesday. Against the average value of 85.02ug/m3, Wednesday’s data touched 124.56ug/m3, a drastic four-time increase from October 29. On Bhai Dooj, it remained high, touching 107.24ug/m3.

High pollution levels in the city resulted in 375 fever cases in four days and 183 respiratory-related emergency cases. The data provided by the state emergency service stated that 18 fire burns and 306 vehicular trauma cases were recorded from Ahmedabad.

The state data reflected a total of 13,769 emergency cases in last four days. This included 1,020 fever, 112 burns, 606 respiratory, 2,618 vehicular trauma and 16 suicide attempts during the four-day-long festive season.

There was a slight increase of 3-4 per cent in the state emergency cases since 2015 on all four days. In 2015, the total emergency cases on Diwali were 3,074. The Gujarati New Year saw Bhai Dooj in 2015 saw 3,814 and 3,501 emergency cases, respectively.

This year, these cases stood at 3,203, 3,934 and 3,627 on October 30, 31 and November 1, respectively.