Surge of Saharan Dust Forecast by End of Week

By late Thursday 25th April, into Friday 26th April, a plume of Saharan Dust is forecast to arrive across Trinidad and Tobago shores, reducing air quality levels to moderate, and at times, unhealthy for sensitive groups.

At moderate air quality levels, unusually sensitive groups should consider reducing prolonged or heavy exertion.

At unhealthy for sensitive groups: There is the increasing likelihood of respiratory symptoms in sensitive individuals. Aggravation of heart or lung disease and possible premature mortality in persons with cardiopulmonary disease and the elderly. People with respiratory or heart disease, the elderly and children should limit prolonged exertion.

Larger, more concentrated plumes of Saharan dust begin to occur in April, and continue through November. This is due to stronger thunderstorms across interior Africa sending dust into the upper atmosphere.

Air Quality Index For The Next 5 Days
Air Quality Index For The Next 5 Days.

Throughout the week, i.e. Tuesday through midday Thursday, very minimal concentrations of Saharan Dust are forecast across Trinidad and Tobago. Air quality is generally forecast to remain at good levels. The exception will be in areas experiencing smokey conditions due to bush fires and blowing dust in dry areas. In these situations, air quality may be reduced to moderate levels.

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00Z April 22nd 2019 NASA GEOS-5 Dust Model showing a mild surge of Saharan Dust arriving across T&T shores beginning on 26th April 2019. Credit: Weatherbell

Related: Saharan Dust

With dry conditions persisting, bush fires will be on the rise. In the presence of even mild Saharan Dust, air quality can quickly degrade to moderate and even unhealthy for sensitive groups. Sensitive groups such as persons with respiratory ailments, children, the elderly and cardiopulmonary disease should take the necessary precautions.

Saharan Dust Precautions
Saharan Dust Precautions
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