Hawaii Volcanic Gases and Ash - 23 of 22
Hawaii Volcanic Gases and Ash FAQs - 22 Found
Vog pose a health hazard by aggravating preexisting respiratory ailments. SO2 gas can irritate skin and the tissues and mucous membranes of the eyes, nose, and throat, and can penetrate airways, producing respiratory distress in some individuals. Aerosol particles in vog can also penetrate deep into human lungs and, at elevated levels, can induce symptoms of asthma.
Physical complaints associated with vog exposure include headaches, breathing difficulties, increased susceptibility to respiratory ailments, watery eyes, sore throat, flu-like symptoms, and a general lack of energy.
Tiny droplets of sulfuric acid in vog creates acid rain, which can leach lead from roofing and plumbing materials, such as nails, paint, solder, and metal flashings. Leached lead poses a health hazard when it contaminates drinking water in rooftop rainwater-catchment systems.
The presence of vog reduces visibility, creating a potential hazard for drivers. Vog can also limit visibility for air and ocean traffic.
- Precautionary Measures for Elevated Sulfur Dioxide Levels on the Big Island: Hawai`i State Department of Health information on SO2 emissions from Kīlauea Volcano. Links to Frequently Asked Questions about SO2 and how it affects health.
- SO2—How Sulfur Dioxide Affects the Way We Live and Breathe: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) information about non-volcanic SO2—what it is, where it comes from, causes for concern, health and environmental impacts, and efforts to reduce it.
- International Volcanic Health Hazard Network: Guidelines, databases, and publications on health hazards of volcanic gas and ash.
- VOG: Important Information and Facts: State of Hawai`i Web site developed through a multi-agency response team, providing comprehensive information about vog on Hawai`i Island and a link to its Health Effects.