HC Deb 15 March 1994 vol 239 cc559-60W
Mr. Soley

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will initiate a study in Hammersmith in respect of any correlation between heavy traffic use on major roads and asthma, eczema and other related diseases.

Mr. Sackville

No. A causal link between air pollutants from traffic and the induction of eczema, asthma and other diseases has not been proven. However, high levels of air pollutants may exacerbate pre-existing respiratory illness.

The Department is advised on these matters by the Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollutants and by the Advisory Group on the Medical Aspects of Air Pollution Episodes. The latter's three reports are available in the Library; they are on ozone; on sulphur dioxide, acid aerosols and particulates; and on oxides of nitrogen. The Committee on the Medical Effects of Air Pollutants has formed a sub-group specifically to consider the relationship between air pollution and asthma.

Advice and information for the public is provided on the freephone helpline: 0800 556677.

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