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Wildfires Prompt Health Advisories in Belize

The Ministry of Health & Wellness (MoHW) and the Department of the Environment (DoE) have issued urgent health advisories to the public as wildfires continue to ravage several communities in the Toledo and Cayo districts of Belize. The infernos have resulted in a surge in air pollution due to smoke, posing health risks, particularly to vulnerable groups such as children, the elderly, and individuals with pre-existing respiratory conditions.

Residents are strongly advised to take precautionary measures to safeguard their health:

Stay Indoors: Residents are urged to limit outdoor exposure, especially during periods of heavy smoke.

Keep Windows and Doors Closed: Ensure living spaces are sealed tightly to prevent smoke infiltration.

Use Air Purifiers: Where available, utilize air purifiers to reduce indoor air pollution levels.

Limit Outdoor Activities: Minimize outdoor physical activities to reduce exposure to polluted air.

Seek Medical Attention: Individuals experiencing respiratory issues should seek prompt medical assistance.

Wear Masks: Wear masks when outdoors in affected areas to filter out fine particulate matter.

Collaborative efforts are underway among MoHW, the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO), the Department of the Environment, and the Ministry of Agriculture to closely monitor and address the situation. Strategies are being implemented to control the wildfires and mitigate their impact on air quality.

Citizens are urged to stay informed through official channels and adhere to advisories issued by the Ministry of Health & Wellness. Additionally, farmers in rural communities are implored to cease and desist from lighting illegal fires, as these actions exacerbate the already dire situation.

As the government remains dedicated to ensuring the safety and well-being of all residents in affected communities, regular updates will be provided as the situation evolves.

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