Aussie bushfire smoke a health hazard

Aussie bushfire smoke a health hazard

20 December 2006

published by

Australia — Health officials say smoke from bushfires raging in Australia’sVictoria state are raising health concerns in Melbourne.

Visibility in the city’s central business district is down to a mile with thefine air particles 7 1/2 times the normal level due to the wildfire burning 100miles away.

Health officials warned residents with respiratory difficulties to stayindoors.

Victorian Health Foundation chief executive Rodney Moody told reporters it isimportant those with certain ailments keep the level of physical activity to aminimum.

“Exercise causes the fine particles to go deep into the lungs,” hesaid.

Meanwhile firefighters are working on containment lines around the ski resortof Mount Buller as the bushfires continue to rage in Victoria’s high country.

The fires are creeping toward ski lifts and chalets but a fire spokesman saidthey were hopeful there will be no property damage.

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