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How to deal with toxic ROAD TAR?

Discussion in 'Hypersensitivity and Intolerance' started by Dreambirdie, Sep 1, 2013.

  1. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    I am now surrounded by newly tarred streets, as every street in my neighborhood was just slurried and sealed with an oil based black tar sealer, all done in the past two weeks.

    I have taped the doors and main windows closed with blue tape, and have an IQ air filter running 24/7 at nearly maximum speed. I go out to the beach in my car every day for at least two hours, to get some "real" air, wearing a mask when I am on the street

    I am drinking lots of chlorophyll water, lemon water, taking NAC regularly.
    I am feeling some effects in spite of this: achy, faster pulse, wired.

    It's a little scary. I don't want to lose the bit of progress I have made, but I really have no eco-safe place to go to escape the stench and offgassing.

    How long will this TOXIC TAR take to air out and be bearable? Any ideas? And anything else I can do to not get really sick from it?
  2. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Hi dreambirdie,

    Hope the odor has resolved by now. I went thru this last year and did most of what you did. I felt puny
    while this was going on but quickly recovered. The beach air helps me too.

    I also took 1 charcoal each day tho. And I now have about 10 plants in my house to help fend off bad odors.
    When an odor is particularly bad I find that I can breath better if I'm closer to these plants. My plants
    get sun most of the day to maximize their cleaning potential.

    I'd love to find a place where the air is always clean. Tc ... X
    Dreambirdie likes this.
  3. jeffrez

    jeffrez Senior Member

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    I feel for you - that fresh tar is simply awful! Sounds like you are doing all the right things - I would just stay at the beach for as long as possible. Usually that stuff dissipates relatively quickly - within a few days it's generally at least tolerable. Try to remain calm and just ride it out, because getting stressed and agitated over it just makes it worse. You /will/ be okay, so just hang in there!
    Dreambirdie and peggy-sue like this.
  4. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    Thanks xchocoholic and jeffrez

    I am coping and hanging in there as best as I can. But in spite of all my precautions, I feel headachy and wired, which is messing with my already fragile sleep.

    I have taped all the doors shut, as well as the windows that face the street, so I'm not sure how the fumes are getting in. Maybe the air filter isn't capable of filtering 100% of the toxins out of the air..? Or... maybe my symptoms are due to the exposure I had last Tuesday, when I had my doors wide open, not knowing that they working on the streets a block away. I know they have a few blocks left to pave, two of which I am downwind of. I will be relieved when they are all finished.

    The hot weather has made the tar stench much stronger. I asked the folks at the health food store how long it took their parking lot to offgas to a bearable level, and they said about ten days. I am now on Day Four, and Day Ten seems really far away. Fortunately, the beach is close by. As long as I don't crash, I will be able to get down there for air during the day.
  5. jeffrez

    jeffrez Senior Member

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    The hot weather might actually work to your favor, allowing it to "cure" and offgas faster, even if a bit worse initially.

    I would massively boost my intake of Vit. C and water! Just keep flushing out all those toxins on the spot. I hope they're done soon and you can some respite. Just remember: this is just temporary! :)
    Dreambirdie likes this.
  6. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    Yes, IT'S TEMPORARY is a good thing to remember.

    I will keep telling myself that over and over.
  7. roxie60

    roxie60 Senior Member

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    I feel for ya Birdie. I always have to run the other direction when I get near a road that has just been surfaced. It is just so hard to breathe. Fortunately they have not done that to my road in a long time (no funds so now they just patch pot holes, on rare occasion they do an entire road/street, usually cause so many pot holes might as well). I hope the odor and exposure risk dissipates soon. It makes so sad that we are the canary's in our society, you would think they would want to take notice and do something.
    Dreambirdie likes this.
  8. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    Two weeks and counting, and I am still getting sick from the road tar. Very toxic and wired, with bad insomnia, achy muscles, and a tanking energy level. It really sucks. :(

    And the confusing thing is, am I detoxing what I was exposed to initially? Or am I now so sensitive to the stench, that I am reacting to lesser and less amounts? or both? And how do I feel better, when the road continues to stink.

    o_O
  9. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    bummer. My reactions never lasted that long. Are you using all your detox tools ?

    fwiw, I'd be taking himalaya liver care, juicing, charcoal, and my regular sleep regime (5http,
    melatonin and klonopin. And eating healthy foods.


    Maybe the fumes ate trapped inside now. I've never taped up my windows.

    hope you feel better soon. x
  10. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    One thing that might conceivably help is buying a large air pollution-busting house plant.

    NASA has researched the considerable air pollution absorbing abilities of certain plants.

    I recommend buying a 3 or 4 foot tall areca palm, as these plants are good at sucking up formaldehyde from the indoor air, as well as absorbing xylene and toluene. They look beautiful too in the home.


    Asphalt gives off formaldehyde, hexane, phenol, polycyclic organic matter, and toluene.

    I wrote up some details about air pollution absorbing plants in this thread here.
    jeffrez likes this.
  11. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Hip

    The place that I'm currently renting was built in 1965 so I'm using a variety of 10 large
    plants recommended by nasa to clean the air. This works best if
    I make sure the plants get Sun everyday. They clean the air when going thru
    photosynthesis. (sp?)

    I needed a lot of plants to feel a difference in the air quality here.

    Getting fresh air in my lungs helps too. Sitting at the beach is great for that.
  12. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    xchocoholic
    I think I read that you get 5 times as much toxin absorption by the leaves of the plant when there is a good light source. I actually set up a few energy saving spotlight bulbs to point at my palm plant all day long, and with this abundance light, the plant is doing very well (lots of new growth), as well as removing toxins at a higher rate.
    xchocoholic likes this.
  13. rosie26

    rosie26 moderate ME

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    Ah Dreambirdie you got severe symptoms there - wired, toxic, insomnia, achy muscles.

    Your heart rate has probably been up a lot since all this started so likely contributing to your deterioration as well.

    I get distressed by strong smells as well. I am not keen on those fragrant bottles of oil with straw like things sitting in them ( can't remember what they are called. can't think as usual !)

    Drink plenty of fluids. Eat fruit. Rest ( the lay down kind )
    Cold flannel to the face throughout the day soothes and calms as well.

    xxx
    Dreambirdie likes this.
  14. Dreambirdie

    Dreambirdie work in progress

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    Hey Everybody: rosie26 xchocoholic Hip roxie60 jeffrez

    Thanks for your support and good suggestions.

    Just checking in to let you know that after NEARLY FIVE WEEKS (4 weeks and 5 days to be exact), the streets have finally off-gassed enough to be considered bearable by my body's standards. They're not yet neutralized enough for me to want spend any length of time standing near them/walking down them, especially in the daytime, when they still have the potential to reek whenever the sun bakes them, but at least there is some improvement.

    It really took much longer than I imagined for the worst to be over. Even with a really good air filter, and my doors taped shut, I still had adverse effects from being surrounded by the toxic stench of fresh black top.

    I would recommend that anyone who has any roads repaved in their neighborhood leave for at least 2 weeks, if they are able to do so.

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