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Exhaust-Induced Asthma

Posted on October 04, 2012
by Wendy Stackhouse

We’ve been talking lately about the dangers of Diesel Exhaust to the environment and how to deal with it. Should we retrofit trucks? Should it be classified as a carcinogen?

A study this week, however, clearly linked childhood asthma with freeway traffic and the car, truck and bus exhaust it brings into a community.

The study was done on 27,000 children with asthma right here in Los Angeles County. It found that 8% of childhood asthma cases occur because of living within 250 feet of a major road.

But AirTek deals with indoor air challenges! Why would we be concerned about outdoor air pollution?

Today’s homes are very well sealed for climate control and energy savings. They are designed to keep the cool air inside the house.  Unfortunately, that means that when outdoor air pollution enters the home, it cannot escape.  That outdoor air pollution includes the carbon monoxide and particles that are part of the air near a major roadway.

We would like to think that not playing outside within 250 feet of a highway would protect our children from the risk of traffic-induced asthma, but the risk is indoors as well as out. It is too late to plan our communities farther away from freeway traffic, but it is not too late to reduce the amount of exhaust and particles polluting our neighborhoods. Regulating trucks, encouraging low- and no-emission vehicle purchases and giving incentives for carpooling are only a few.

We would love to hear your suggestions for reducing traffic-induced childhood asthma rates in the comments!

Wendy Stackhouse is the Online Community Manager for AirTek and our parent company, Alliance Environmental Group, which offers residential and commercial cleaning, pest control, demolition, structural pasteurization and many other enviromental challenges. She is very happy to blog, post and Tweet for Alliance and AirTek! She can hear the freeway from her house, but does not live within 250 feet, thank goodness!

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