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Vog likely to linger for a few more days


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POSTED: Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Vog from Kilauea Volcano will linger at least a few more days because of light winds, according to the National Weather Service.

The vog was so thick yesterday that the state issued a health advisory for Maui County, and conditions on the Big Island occasionally reached “;unhealthy”; levels.

The Maui advisory cautioned residents and visitors to reduce contact with volcanic emissions by remaining in a closed-vent, air-conditioned environment as much as possible.

No advisories were issued for other islands, including the Big Island, where county officials have focused on issuing alerts, mainly when there are elevated sulfur dioxide levels.

A lack of tradewinds allows volcanic emissions from the volcano to drift over the islands. National Weather Service lead forecaster Jeff Powell said light tradewinds are expected to return later in the week.

On the Big Island, air quality at the Jaggar Museum and the visitor center at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park was listed occasionally yesterday as “;unhealthy”; and “;unhealthy for sensitive groups,”; according to the state Health Department.

Air quality was occasionally unhealthy for sensitive groups at Pahala yesterday and in Kona Monday.

Health officials on Maui advise people in affected areas to avoid vigorous outside activity, to drink plenty of fluids and to keep any needed medications at hand.

Maui County also issued a ban on burning.