Totobobo Masks Protect From Pollution in Festival of Diwali

diwalli

Air Pollution Level Skyrocket in India during Diwali
Diwali, the festival of lights is one of the biggest festivals in India. This festival which signifies the homecoming of Lord Rama, is an occasion of celebration and opulence. Traditionally, the festival is celebrated by decorating one’s home with lights and confetti and by bursting all kinds of firecrackers. Fun and games apart, fireworks lead to an unimaginable increase in the level of air pollutants.
Anyone who has been to India, and to Delhi in particular, during Diwali would definitely mention how polluted the air gets. According to a report in newspaper, The Hindu, in 2015, on Diwali the levels of harmful PM2.5 as measured by the Delhi Pollution Control Committee were 985 microgrammes per cubic metre at 9.20 pm on Diwali night in a certain location, as against the World Health Organisation’s safe standard of 60. This was twice as high as the PM2.5 levels in September 2015 in Singapore which forced school closures and the relocation of outdoor and sporting events.

A Toxic Concoction of Pollutants
A 2014 study by the Indian Environment Portal on the effects of firecrackers on air quality found that very high levels of PM10 and PM2.5 as well as gaseous pollutants like SO2 and NO2 are present in the air during Diwali. Firecrackers contain salts of aluminum, arsenic, sulphur, manganese, iron dust etc that are released in the atmosphere.
Inhalation of smoke of firecrackers is very harmful not just to the asthmatic and the elderly but also to health human beings and can cause cough, fever and can also cause acute eosinophillic pneumonia. Fine particles such as PM2.5 are particularly harmful to humans as they get into the respiratory system and trigger asthmatic attacks and even cause permanent damage. The chemicals found in the firecrackers are harmful if inhaled. Antimony sulphide that is added to produce glitter effect is toxic and a possible carcinogen. You can check out the complete list of pollutants and their effects on Table 6 in the report mentioned above.

Diwali firework contains a lot of air pollution

Diwali firework contains a lot of air pollution

Totobobo Masks with F94 filters suitable for Diwali
A study regarding the specifications of different anti pollution masks available in the Indian market recommended Totobobo masks for protection from most pollutants during Diwali. The pollutants emitted during the festival were compared to what the anti pollution mask was capable of filtered and it was found out that the F94 filters were sufficient to cut down most of the PM2.5 particles.
It is important to know that a mask needs to be used correctly if it is to provide any protection from pollutants. For example if the seal between the mask and the nose and mouth is not secure, then the mask is useless. Totobobo masks have a seal check feature where a poor seal can be easily detected and the mask can even be moulded to improve the seal using hot water. Anti pollution masks should also be regularly replaced as their performance drops with us. Totobobo masks have a filter life check which makes it easy to know when the filter needs to be replaced.

These features make totobobo masks suitable for high pollution conditions similar to the ones experienced during Diwali, the festival of lights.
If you are in India, you can buy Totobobo masks by calling Mr Roopak directly on his mobile number 9871166668.

3 months air pollution captured on Totobobo filters & cost of air pollution (World Bank)

Totobobo filter lungs

“Totobobo filter lungs” showing air pollution captured in 3 months of cycling and taking Underground.

“Whatever is on the filters, glad that stuff is not in my lungs!”
John from London, U.K.

John sent us his used filters after 3 months of using Totobobo mask for cycling and taking the Underground in London. He was shocked to see the dirty filters, much in the same way as Claire’s account of her experience of using our mask. At an individual level, increased level of fine particles, or PM2.5, was found to be responsible for triggering heart attack and respiratory diseases.

In hindsight, both John and Claire were smart to do something to reduce their exposure to air pollution. A recent study, jointly conducted by the World Bank and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, estimated that 5.5. million lives were lost in 2013 to diseases associated with outdoor and household air pollution, which has emerged as the deadliest form of pollution and the fourth leading risk factor for premature deaths worldwide. While pollution-related deaths mainly strike young children and the elderly, these deaths also result in lost labor income for working-age men and women. The cost to the economy is substantial. Through the lens of “welfare losses” across age groups, the aggregate cost of premature deaths was more than US$5 trillion worldwide in 2013.

The infographic below is from the World Bank site. It shows the substantial burden of air pollution, strengthening the economic case for action. As you read the infographic, think about what will you do to reduce air pollution.

Air pollution costs money and lives, World Bank and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

Air pollution costs money lives, World Bank and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (image credit: World Bank)