Fenomena “Yellow Dust” yang Menyelimuti Korea Selatan

credit :koreaherald.com

credit :koreaherald.com

Annyeong!

*As this article contains a lot of technical words, I will write it both in Indonesian and English!*

As winter is almost over and Spring is on its way, South Korea has encountered the Yellow Dust Storm all over again. Originating from the deserts in southern Mongolia and northern China, the dusty air flew into the Korean Peninsula on a northwesterly wind over the weekend, the city government said. The weather office issued this year’s first advisory against yellow dust particles in the city on Sunday (22/02/2015), the Seoul metropolitan government said, asking citizens to stay indoors. South Korean meteorologists expect this year’s yellow dust season to be milder than recent years, despite an early coating during the past two days that spurred health advisories across the country.

The dust typically comes from the Chinese and Mongolian deserts, potentially bringing along with it bacteria and industrial pollutants.This week’s heavy dusting falls slightly out of the usual March to May season; however,the Korea Meteorological Administration expects a lower level of yellow dust than the country averaged between 1981 and 2010.

The prevailing winds in central and southern China are likely to undergo a cyclical change this year. As a result, South Korea won’t experience the northwesterly winds that have worsened yellow dust levels in recent years.

The dust prompted the Korea Meteorological Administration to issue warnings in Seoul and several other surrounding cities Sunday, along with yellow dust advisories from Incheon in the north to Gwangju in the south.High concentrations of the yellow dust particulates, which can cause respiratory illness, remained in the air through Monday afternoon.Yongsan Garrison measured a high of 1,044 micrograms per cubic meter of air as of 4 a.m. Monday, according to the 65th Medical Brigade website.

On Monday (22/02/2015), the dust concentration in Seoul reached 1,044 micro grams per cubic meter, the fourth-highest since 2002, when the government started to collect such measurements. Ganghwado Island in Incheon coast recorded 707 micro grams per cubic meter, followed by Chuncheon, Gangwon Province, with 696 micro grams per cubic meter, the weather agency said.

Yellow dust advisories are issued when an hour average dust concentration of more than 400 micro grams per cubic meter is expected to continue for more than two hours. More than 800 micro grams per cubic meter for over two hours triggers a warning. At 800 micro grams or greater, Korea Meteorological Administration officials recommend that all outdoor activities be canceled during yellow dust warnings, and that the young, old and infirm stay indoors.

Yellow Dust could bring many illness such as respiratory and other health problems. So to minimize those negative effects , here are some of the things that you should do during the Yellow Dust Storm:

  • Avoid outdoor activities, this applies especially to the elderly, young children and persons with heart disease, diabetes and lung diseases or respiratory problems, such as asthma.
  • Keep windows and doors closed.
  • Remove contact lenses and wear your glasses instead, the dust can scratch your lenses and damage your eyes
  • Brush your teeth and wash your hands, face and eyes with warm water when returning indoors.
  • Drink plenty of water to keep your tears flowing well and prevent skin dehydration.
  • Use air filters to keep air clear and a humidifier to increase the humidity level inside your home/office.
  • Wear long sleeves as often as possible when outside.
  •  Wash your hands carefully before handling food.
  • Eat vitamin-rich and high-protein foods to help stabilize your immune system.
  • Even after the storm passes, be careful since the dust has settled and can easily be stirred by movement, wind, etc.

 

Korea Selatan, khususnya Seoul dan Incheon, sedang diliputi oleh badai Yellow Dust atau lebih dikenal dengan kata “Yellow Dust Storm” beberapa hari ini.

Yellow Dust, atau yang secara harafiah diartikan sebagai badai debu bewarna kuning, berasal dari padang gurun di Mongolia dan Cina. Udara yang mengandung debu ini bergerak menuju area Korea Selatan sejak Minggu (22/02/2014). Pemerintah Korea pun menghimbau bagi penduduk untuk tetap berada didalam ruangan dan mengurangi aktivitas di luar ruangan.Angin yang berhembus di Cina mengalami perubahan siklikal tahun ini sehingga Korea Selatan tidak akan mengalami fenomena “Yellow Dust” yang makin parah. Badan Meteorologi Korea Selatan memperkirakan bahwa Yellow Dust kali ini lebih sedikit dibanding tahun-tahun sebelumnya.

Akibat badai debu yang terjadi, Pihak Administrasi Meteorologi Korea mengeluarkan tanda peringatan di kota Seoul dan beberapa kota sekitarnya seperti Incheon dan Gwangju pada hari Minggu lalu.  Konsentrat yang tinggi didalam partikel  “Yellow Dust”ini bisa menyebabkan gangguan pernapasan dan sejumlah gangguan lainnya. Pada hari Senin (23/02/2015) lalu, di kota Seoul terdapat 1.044 mikrogram debu per meter kubik udara. Kandungan debu ini adalah keempat tertinggi sejak tahun 2002. Udara di Pulau Ganghwado di Incheon mengandung 707 mikrogram debu per kubik meter udara, sementara di Chuncheon-Provinsi Gangwon mempunyai 696 mikrogram debu per meter kubik.

Peringatan pertama akan dikeluarkan bila rata-rata konsentrat debu per meter kubik mencapai lebih dari 400 mikrogram, dan diperkirakan berlangsung selama lebih dari dua jam. Apabila mencapai angka lebih 800 mikrogram debu per meter kubik selama dua jam, maka pihak Administrasi Meteorologi Korea akan menyuruh semua penduduk untuk menghentikan aktivitas diluar ruangan (outdoor activities) dan menghimbau agar anak-anak, orang yang lanjut usia, serta orang yang memiliki kelemahan tubuh untuk tetap didalam ruangan.

Karena debu yang dibawa berakibat buruk bagi pernapasan dan gangguan kesehatan lainnya, berikut adalah beberapa hal yang penting untuk dilakukan selama fenomena “Yellow Dust” ini berlangsung:

  • Hindari kegiatan yang dilakukan di udara terbuka/ luar ruangan; terlebih lagi bagi orang lanjut usia, anak-anak, dan orang berpenyakit jantung dan gangguan pernapasan lainnya seperti asma.
  • Tutuplah jendela- jendela dan pintu-pintu untuk mencegah debu masuk kedalam ruangan tertutup.
  • Hindari pemakaian lensa kontak dan pakailah kacamata yang nyaman. Debu yang berterbangan bisa menggores lensa anda dan melukai mata anda.
  • Gosok gigi dan cuci tangan, muka, dan mata dengan air hangat setelah beraktivitas di luar.
  • Minum banyak air putih untuk menjaga kelembaban tubuh dan mencegah dehidrasi kulit.
  • Gunakan air filteres (mesin filter udara) untuk menjaga udara didalam ruangan tetap bersih dan menjaga tingkat kelembaban didalam ruangan/ kantor anda.
  • Sebisa mungkin pakailah baju berlengan panjang selama berada di luar.
  • Cucilah tangan sampai bersih sebelum memegang makanan.
  • Konsumsi makanan-makanan bervitamin dan berprotein tinggi untuk memperkuat sistem kekebalan tubuh.
  • Setelah “Yellow Dust” berlalu pun, tetaplah berhati-hati karena debu yang tersisa bisa dengan mudah terbawa angin.

(information taken from http://www.koreaherald.com)

Keep safe and be healthy during this “Yellow Dust” Storm!

Best regards,

koreanmate

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