La Calima leaves Gran Canaria without generating chaos in the ER - La Provincia
With the skies cleared and the alert of the calima deactivated, only the sand in streets and houses appeared yesterday as an annoying trace of the worst syringe that the Archipelago has lived in the last four decades. Gran Canaria was returning to normal, the Carnival regained its prominence and citizens no longer had to walk with their faces hidden behind masks or scarves. The focus was yesterday on the Emergency Department of health centers and hospitals on the Island, prepared to receive those asthmatic and allergic patients who could begin to suffer the consequences of dust in suspension in their lungs. However, tranquility reigned in the sanitary facilities to which the patients came to droppers, as a good holiday worth its salt.
From the Doctor Negrín Hospital it was reported that during the day yesterday, the usual care pressure was worked on at this time of year, without an increase in demand despite the spectacular weather suffered during the weekend. The same calm was breathed in the Maternal-Childhood Insular University Hospital Complex (Chuimi), where frequent respiratory pathologies of this type of episodes were attended and it was clarified that the situation was totally under control.
Although on Saturday and Sunday the Archipelago suffered the highest concentration of dust in suspension in recent decades, the absence of sanitary complications is due in part to the anticipation from the beginning. The predictions of the State Meteorological Agency, which hit with the arrival of the calima and its maintenance for three days, motivated in turn that the Canary Government will declare the alert situation after 4 pm on Saturday. In addition, the very magnitude of the episode caused many citizens and tourists, especially those suffering from chronic respiratory diseases, to follow the main recommendations decreed by the General Directorate of Public Health of the Canary Health Service. Among these were those of keeping the doors and windows closed, avoiding going outside, taking the usual medication and drinking a lot of liquid, avoiding dry environments.
This anticipation when facing the anomalous union of meteorological factors - the lack of humidity, high temperatures and the high concentration of suspended particles - that caused chaos in the Canary Islands influenced when explaining the calm that prevailed yesterday in the Urgencies of the Island. Much more taking into account that the dust that now arrives from Africa has greatly varied its composition due to the economic development of this continent. Depending on the direction of the wind, there are four types of calima, which can incorporate particles of bromine, chromium, nickel, zinc or zirconium, chemical compounds toxic to people and harmful to the environment.
Although those affected by this meteorological phenomenon have not increased in Gran Canaria, it is still early to lower their guard. In people with asthma and those who suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (Epoc), the effects of calima can be noticed 24 to 72 hours after being exposed to the harmful particles. For this reason, hospital centers are still prepared to provide oxygen, aerosols or intravenous medication to those who need it.
In addition to healthcare professionals, cleaning teams should also be on alert. Although the trade winds began to sweep the dust in suspension from the skies of the Islands today, more complicated will be that the houses, cars and streets of Gran Canaria look bright again. Brown has become the new star color of the municipalities of the Island, but it is not the only memory of these intense days. The dragonflies continue to roam freely and yesterday they became unexpected and annoying guest artists of the Carnival Day held in the Santa Catalina park. A party that was lived again without frights and with joyful freedom, with thousands of people who finally exchanged masks for masks. People went back into the street to finally breathe clean air, tourists were slowly returning to their homes and students were returning to class today. With their beneficial presence, the trade winds not only take the dust in suspension from the Canarian skies, but they restore the quiet routine to some Islands that have lived a weekend of real nightmare.