DEC urges the public to exercise caution in the event of an ashfall.
Volcanic ash is made of small abrasive particles that pose several health concerns. Exposure to ash can lead to irritation of the eyes, skin, and respiratory system. While short-term exposure to ash is not known to pose a significant health hazard to healthy individuals, it may cause sensitive individuals such as infants, children, and the elderly to experience difficulty breathing. Individuals with respiratory conditions such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and asthma are more at risk for developing acute respiratory symptoms from breathing volcanic ash.
Contact your health care provider if you have any concerns about your symptoms.
Simple yet effective precautions to protect your health include staying indoors, wearing long sleeves, breathing through a dust mask or wetted cloth, removing contact lenses, and wearing eye protection.