Toxic Smog Hits Most Severe “Black Alert” in London


Toxic air in London has hit the most severe “black” alert today. This led one school in central London to restrict outdoor times for young children.

The top toxic smog “black” alert was reached today in London, just a few weeks into 2017. There were also several red “high alerts” all over the capital. Toxic air levels in London had already breached many national limits just a few days into the year.

The Toxic Smog Measurements

Very high toxic air readings for tiny particulate pollution were measured at many sites in the UK just before 6am, including Sir John Cass’s Foundation Primary School, in the city area, Marylebone Road in Westminster, and three other locations in Camden – Swiss Cottage, Euston Road and Bloomsbury.

There were also 12 red “high alerts” for pollution peaks at sites in London such as Kensington & Chelsea, Richmond, Ealing, Brent, Enfield, Lambeth, Lewisham, Harrow, Hammersmith & Fulham, Redbridge, Greenwich and Tower Hamlets.

Restrictions due to the Toxic Smog

Outdoor activity is being restricted for children between the ages of three months and five years, at Sir John Cass’s primary school, Aldgate. This restriction was also partially due to low temperatures.

Older students were also advised to refrain from strenuous exercise outdoors if they felt unwell. Head teacher Tim Wilson said: “We make sure our staff can take sensible and informed action on days like this.”

“As a school we are supportive of any action that improves air quality in London.”

Other schools also took action due to the smog. Professor Jonathan Grigg, Professor of pediatric Respiratory and Environmental Medicine at Queen Mary University of London, said: “For children with asthma and other long-term respiratory diseases, it would be prudent not to have them exercising outside on these sort of days when pollution is so high.”