Frequently Asked Questions

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What actions can I take to reduce potential health effects of SO2?

When SO2 concentrations are elevated, consider reducing or rescheduling activities outdoors, remaining indoors, and reducing indoor sources of SO2 including tobacco smoke and unvented gas stoves. Persons with asthma should follow a management plan developed with their health care provider. If you are having trouble breathing, have chest pain or discomfort, or a severe cough, contact your health care provider or emergency department. See HealthLinkBC for a summary of health recommendations.

The SO2 levels and health guidance in the table below are based on Health Canada’s 2016 Human Health Risk Assessment for Sulphur Dioxide. For more information on the levels experienced in Trail, see docs 8.

SO2 LevelsConsider taking the following action at these levels of SO2
0-35 ppbNone
36-184 ppbPersons with chronic respiratory conditions such as asthma should consider reducing or rescheduling strenuous outdoor activities if experiencing symptoms. No effects are expected for the general population.
185+ ppbPersons with chronic respiratory conditions such as asthma should reduce or reschedule strenuous activities outdoors. Others, especially children and the elderly should also consider avoiding outdoor physical exertion.
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