Fatal Elementary?

LETHAL EL? THE INSANITY OF AN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL AT A HIGH TRAFFIC INTERSECTION

What precise understanding of the term “fatal” does Monongalia County Schools not understand?

Traffic fumes increase the risks of child pneumonia…which can be fatal,” writes Denis Campbell, health correspondent, The Guardian:

“Children who live near a main road are in greater danger of catching pneumonia because pollution from passing traffic damages their lungs. A leading expert in childhood breathing difficulties has made the link between exposure to particles from vehicle exhausts and a child’s susceptibility to the chest infection, which can be fatal.”

Scientists Doug Brugge, John L. Durant, and Christine Rioux in their study “Near-highway pollutants in motor vehicle exhaust: A review of epidemiologic evidence of cardiac and pulmonary health risks” report that:

People living or otherwise spending substantial time within about 200 m of highways are exposed to [vehicle] pollutants more so than persons living at a greater distance, even compared to living on busy urban streets.

Because only about 1 acre or less of the intended new consolidated “green” elementary schoolgrounds is located more than 200 meters from both the current roads and the impending roads’ expansion and intersection shift, evidently no part of the new consolidated green elementary school building and possibly even none of the playgrounds would be farther than 200 meters from the high-traffic congested highways and their intersection: all with attendant literally sickening pollution that does not simply extend past the school and grounds at one point or even at simply one stretch but half wraps the school and grounds, flanking immediately or closely on two full sides (of the rectangular property) and then trailing away at more distance from yet a third (the other long) full side. The majority of the schoolgrounds and apparently at least part of the school would be within 150 meters (let alone 200 meters, which all of the school would be within) of not just one high-traffic congested highway but of two such highways plus their intersection.

Also see: Asthma Elementary and No Health and Safety and The Road to Charleston and What Not to Do and Damaging Children for Life.

Additionally recall that this intersection is the 6th most accident-prone intersection in greater Morgantown, and situated on by far the most accident prone road in the area, and notoriously congested.

Denis Campbell continues:

Previous studies have blamed proximity to a main road for children having higher rates of asthma, wheezing, coughs, ear, nose and throat infections, and food allergies.

A study this month by the Boston-based Health Effects Institute claimed that toxic emissions from vehicles can speed up hardening of the arteries, as well as impairing lung function.

“Strong evidence” suggested that being exposed to traffic fumes can lead to variations in heart rate and other potentially fatal heart complaints, the study said.

Studies show that the occurrence of pneumonia, asthma, and heart ailments can be potentially fatal, more severe, and more numerous due to traffic pollution. Crash, smash, and collapse: the new consolidated “green” school site. Has Monongalia County Schools gone completely insane? Has Mon Schools never heard of the crime called negligent homicide? In West Virginia, the charge would be involuntary manslaughter.  And how about additionally paying liability with taxpayer funds for a settlement of tens of millions of dollars?

Is School Board President Barbara Parsons, who works as the Director of Educational Services at Monongalia General Hospital, really oblivious to the effects of traffic pollution on health?

_________________

Traffic fumes increase the risks of child pneumonia

Top consultant announces breakthrough study

Denis Campbell, health correpondent

The Observer / The Guardian Sunday 24 January 2010

Children who live near a main road are in greater danger of catching pneumonia because pollution from passing traffic damages their lungs. A leading expert in childhood breathing difficulties has made the link between exposure to particles from vehicle exhausts and a child’s susceptibility to the chest infection, which can be fatal.

Professor Jonathan Grigg, an honorary consultant at the Royal London Hospital and academic paediatrician at Queen Mary, University of London, made the breakthrough after studying the effect of airborne pollutants on human lung cells. Children whose home is within 100 metres of a main road could be as much as 65% more likely than others to develop pneumonia, he said.

Although the disease is usually associated with the elderly, it is a significant childhood illness. Every year about 20,000 children and young people under 18 end up in hospital after contracting the condition. It can also be fatal. Between 2004 and 2008, it killed between 60 and 77 patients aged under 20 annually, of whom between 38 and 52 were under the age of five, according to data from the Office of National Statistics.

Children under 12 months are the most likely to die. Of the 76 young people under 20 who died in 2008, 29 had not reached their first birthday – 20 boys and nine girls – and 23 others were between one and four.

Grigg took contaminated air particles collected as part of Leicester city council’s air-quality monitoring system and recreated their impact in a laboratory. He then added bacteria that would cause pneumonia in a human and assessed how many were sticking to the surface of the cells and getting inside them. In normal lungs a few bacteria do that, but in the lung cells that had been artificially exposed to pollution three to four times more did so.

“These findings strongly suggest that particles pollution is a major factor in making children vulnerable to pneumonia. We’ve shown a very firm link between the two. The study raises strong suspicions that particles cause pneumonia in children,” said Grigg. “This is significant because pneumonia causes many admissions of previously healthy children to hospital.” Some children with the disease spend several weeks in intensive care.

Previous studies have blamed proximity to a main road for children having higher rates of asthma, wheezing, coughs, ear, nose and throat infections, and food allergies.

A study this month by the Boston-based Health Effects Institute claimed that toxic emissions from vehicles can speed up hardening of the arteries, as well as impairing lung function.

“Strong evidence” suggested that being exposed to traffic fumes can lead to variations in heart rate and other potentially fatal heart complaints, the study said.

Exposure to the burning of wood or coal, or to tobacco smoke, can also increase a child’s chances of pneumonia. One study found that secondhand smoke was to blame for 28.7% of all children under five in Vietnam who were admitted to hospital with the condition.

Professor Steve Field, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, said: “We have known for some time that pollution causes chest problems, such as asthma, in both children and adults. This new research adds to the weight of evidence about the problems of air pollution, especially [from] cars, buses and lorries [freight truck].”

Childhood pneumonia was important because it often led to admission to hospital, costing the NHS hundreds of pounds per bed per day.

The research underlined the need for Britain to move towards greener forms of transport in order to protect public health from traffic fumes, he suggested.

The Eastwood Mileground site is not only unhealthy, it’s unsafe:

“433 wrecks, 30 weeks, 8 sites” – first 30 weeks of 2010:

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