Dust storm asthma warning

The area likely to be affected. Image: Bureau of Meteorology via Twitter.
The area likely to be affected. Image: Bureau of Meteorology via Twitter.

Asthma Australia has issued advice for people with the condition due to the risk of a severe dust storm on Thursday

The Bureau of Meteorology has issued a warning that a vigorous cold front will move across western and central parts of South Australia today, with strong to gale force winds.

Damaging northerly winds, averaging 50-70 km/h with gusts of around 80-100 km/h, are forecast, with the likelihood of raised dust. Locations which may be affected include Adelaide, Port Lincoln, Whyalla, Wudinna, Roxby Downs and Port Augusta.

Asthma Australia warns that dust is a trigger for asthma, which affects an estimated 180,000 people in South Australia, and that raised dust could exacerbate asthma symptoms.

“Environment plays a significant part in asthma control and dust is a very common trigger,” says Michele Goldman, CEO of Asthma Australia.

“If there are adverse weather conditions involving a lot of dust in the air, people with asthma should be diligent to follow steps to minimise risks of a flare up.

“Remain indoors, keep reliever medication close at hand, follow their asthma action plan if they have one and consult a health professional if experiencing severe symptoms.”

People with asthma are encouraged to follow these steps if dust is a trigger for their condition:

  1. Remain indoors with windows closed.
  2. Take preventer medication as directed and carry asthma reliever medication at all times.
  3. Follow your asthma action plan and contact your health professional if symptoms persist. Anyone requiring urgent medical attention is encouraged to call Triple Zero (000)
  4. Familarise the four steps for asthma first aid and what to do in an asthma emergency.
  5. For more information on how to manage your symptoms, call the 1800 ASTHMA Helpline (1800 278 462)

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