Monday 24 July 2017

Quiet road leads to better health

Walk on quieter roads to avoid car pollution
Walk on quieter roads to avoid car pollution

Commuting to work by walking on quieter side streets rather than main roads can help people avoid exposure to peaks in harmful air pollution, according to new research.

Black carbon is one of the components of air pollution and comes from incomplete combustion by diesel cars.

It is known to be associated with a range of respiratory diseases, such as asthma, and cardiovascular diseases.

A researcher at Queen Mary University of London used a hand-held monitor to measure levels of black carbon particulate matter while walking between Whitechapel in the east of London to Moorgate, which is nearer to central London, between 4pm-7pm using main roads.

She then used an urban walking route planner (www.walkit.com) for a quieter route that might, potentially, have lower levels of air pollution.

The study showed people could avoid peaks in black carbon if they choose to walk in quieter side streets. There was a statistically significant difference in the peaks of exposure to black carbon exposure.

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