Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Public Needs To Stay Indoors If Sumatra's Volcanic Ashes Hit Malaysia - Health Ministry

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 11 (Bernama) -- The public is advised to stay indoors with all doors and windows closed if ashes from the volcanic eruption of Mount Sinabung in North Sumatea are carried by winds towards Malaysia.

Director-General of Health Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah also advised Malaysians to wear masks or using a cloth or a wet handkerchief as a respiratory protective device if the air is polluted.

"Children, elderly people and those who have medical problems should avoid or reduce outdoor activities during this time.

"People are also advised to drink plenty of water, frequently wash the face and other parts of the body that are exposed," he said in a statement here, today.

He also advised the public to refrain from driving in ashy conditions since it may be difficult due to poor visibility resulting in motor vehicle accidents.

Mount Sinabung has been in an eruptive state since Sept 15 and the latest eruption started on Jan 30 resulted in the release of hot ash in the air of the height of 5km.

Although the possibility of people in Malaysia to be exposed to the ash is low but it is likely to involve Malaysia, especially areas on the west coast and southern part of the peninsula.

Dr Noor Hisham said those who are exposed to the ash will experience various eye, nose, throat and skin symptoms.

He said people usually experience eye discomfort or irritation during and after ash fall, especially those using contact lenses.

He added that the ministry will continue to monitor the situation of the volcanic dust and advise those who suffer medical illnesses related to the ash to seek medical treatment from the nearest clinic or hospital.


No comments: