• Costa Rica Coffee Guide

Smoke from trash dump fire covers Panama’s capital

March 20, 2013

PANAMA CITY – A cloud of toxic smoke covered a large part of the Panamanian capital on Wednesday as a fire burned in the city’s largest trash dump.

“This gas emission is totally toxic. We must check the toxicity levels,” Health Vice Minister Serafín Sánchez said.

The gray cloud came after a fire broke out Tuesday in five hectares of Cerro Patacón dump – located 12 kilometers outside the city – which is “the repository of all the garbage of our capital city,” Sánchez added.

The dense cloud was slowly dissipating Wednesday morning, but caused irritation in many people according to an AFP reporter.

Health authorities urged surrounding populations to protect themselves by covering their faces with scarves and by keeping their houses closed.

Government officials suspended classes in all schools adjacent to the fire area as a preventive measure.

Health experts warned that besides immediate effects related to diseases such as asthma, bronchitis or allergies, the smoke, methane and carbon dioxide mixture releases dioxins that may be carcinogenic.

However Panama’s director of the National Civil Protection Service, Arturo Alvarado, called for calm and assured that “no toxicity” has been registered, and that “there is no reason to be alarmed.”

According to Alvarado, the carbon dioxide levels are normal as well as the quality of the oxygen at different points where they have been performing tests.

You may be interested

Costa Rica has received 1.1 million Covid vaccines, applied 700,000
Costa Rica
1 views
Costa Rica
1 views

Costa Rica has received 1.1 million Covid vaccines, applied 700,000

The Tico Times - April 21, 2021

Costa Rica received a shipment of 118,000 Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccines on Tuesday night and has been delivered 1.14 million total…

Review: Invictus Restaurant, Lounge and Sports Bar
News
4 views
News
4 views

Review: Invictus Restaurant, Lounge and Sports Bar

Chris Howard - April 21, 2021

I was contacted by the Tico Times to write a review of a restaurant in Escazú. Ironically, it turned out…

Commemorative stamps mark Costa Rica’s path to 200 years
Costa Rica
11 views
Costa Rica
11 views

Commemorative stamps mark Costa Rica’s path to 200 years

The Tico Times - April 21, 2021

Costa Rica is celebrating its bicentennial this year, and the country is marking the occasion with, among other things, a…