Document Detail

Comparisons of commuter's exposure to particulate matters while using different transportation modes.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  18657850     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
This study compared commuters' exposures to particulate matter (PM) while using motorcycles, cars, buses, and the mass rapid transit (MRT) on the same routes in Taipei, Taiwan. Motorcycle commuters who had the shortest travel time (28.4+/-4.2 min) were exposed to the highest concentrations of PM(10) (112.8+/-38.3 microg/m(3)), PM(2.5) (67.5+/-31.3 microg/m(3)), and PM(1.0) (48.4+/-24.7 microg/m(3)) among four commuting modes. By contrast, car commuters were exposed to the lowest PM concentrations and had the second shortest travel time among them. Motorcycle commuters' high trip-averaged PM concentrations and bus commuters' long commuting time (43.1+/-5.1 min) resulted in their high whole-trip PM exposures. Size fractions of PM were relatively consistent across PM exposures of the four commuting modes with fine particles (PM(2.5)) contributing to 53-60% of PM(10) and submicron particle (PM(1)) contributing to 39-43% of PM(10). Motorcycles idled at traffic lights and bus doors opened at stops increased commuters' PM exposures. Fixed-site monitoring data explained well the variation of whole-trip PM(10) exposure of car (r(2)=0.63) and MRT (r(2)=0.52) commuters, and of whole-trip PM(2.5) exposure of car (r(2)=0.76), MRT (r(2)=0.73) and motorcycle (r(2)=0.64) commuters in regression analyses. The coefficients (slopes) of regression between fixed-site monitoring data and PM(2.5) exposures were less than 1 for car and MRT commuters but greater than 1 for motorcycle commuters. In conclusion, proximity to traffic emissions contributes to a person's high PM exposure during his or her daily commute. This proximity occurs when people use motorcycles on roads and when bus/MRT commuters walk or wait along commuting routes. Fixed-site air monitoring data can under-estimate motorcycle commuters' PM(2.5) exposures but over-estimate car and MRT commuters' PM(2.5) exposures.
Dai-Hua Tsai; Yi-Her Wu; Chang-Chuan Chan
Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article     Date:  2008-07-26
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Science of the total environment     Volume:  405     ISSN:  0048-9697     ISO Abbreviation:  Sci. Total Environ.     Publication Date:  2008 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2008-10-17     Completed Date:  2009-01-15     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0330500     Medline TA:  Sci Total Environ     Country:  Netherlands    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  71-7     Citation Subset:  IM    
Institute of Occupational Medicine and Industrial Hygiene, College of Public Health, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan.
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MeSH Terms
Environmental Monitoring*
Inhalation Exposure / analysis*
Particle Size
Particulate Matter / analysis*,  chemistry
Vehicle Emissions / analysis*
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Particulate Matter; 0/Vehicle Emissions

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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