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Sidewalk pollution flows caused by vehicular traffic place children at a higher acute exposure risk

Abstract

The objective of this work is to study the immediate transport flows of PM2.5 diesel exhaust emissions on a city sidewalk. Under calm conditions largest direct exhaust PM2.5 diesel concentrations tend to accumulate at two preferred heights: higher ones at 200–225 cm due to truck and buses aerodynamics, and lower ones at 130–160 cm due to light vehicles. Obtained flows indicate that exhaust emissions are transported to these heights via vortices generated by vehicular traffic. The lower height vortices transporting PM2.5 direct diesel emissions place children aged between 7 and 15 at a higher acute exposure risk due to their stature. Also, the hourly averaged PM2.5 concentrations tend to accumulate nearer to the roadside. This information was obtained using a specially designed electromechanical near-surface atmospheric profiler equipped with a PM2.5 measurement instrument, a thermistor and a sonic anemometer installed on a sidewalk. Using signal analysis techniques, coherent flows of direct PM2.5 emissions and thermal information were obtained. The proposed methodology can be used to evaluate before and after urban interventions, obtain full-scale sidewalk data for exposure studies and provides criteria on where to place sidewalk measurement instruments.

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Acknowledgements

To project CDMX CM-SECITI/063/2018. We acknowledge the technical help of José Manuel Hernández, Gema Luz Andraca, Oscar Augusto Peralta, Ruben Pavia Hernández, Brenda Liz Valle Hernández, Rafael Nery Liñan Abanto, Manuel García Espinosa, Wilfrido Gutiérrez López and Miguel Angel Robles.

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Correspondence to Aron Jazcilevich.

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Jazcilevich, A., de la Cruz Zavala, J., Erazo Arcos, A.M. et al. Sidewalk pollution flows caused by vehicular traffic place children at a higher acute exposure risk. J Expo Sci Environ Epidemiol 29, 491–499 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41370-018-0083-4

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41370-018-0083-4

Keywords

  • Vortex
  • Preferred Height
  • Full-scale Pavement
  • Diesel Exhaust Emissions
  • Vehicular Emissions

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