Volvo battle against hay fever with radical new cars
15th August 2012
Car manufacturer Volvo, already have a well-established reputation for quality cars and the company has witnessed a massive growth in the past decade especially. The Swedish company were once more known for safety above aesthetics and style, but in recent years, the manufacturers have carved themselves a fabulous reputation for good-looking, affordable cars. Now they have turned more of their attentions to the medical aspects of the vehicles. In a bid to help the estimated 10 million people suffering from hay fever in the UK, Volvo have made the applaudable decision to include either an Air Quality System (AQS) or Pollen Filter, as standard in any model of its cars. An AQS operates by examining the levels of particles from incoming air, via the use of an interior air quality sensor. If it detects that levels of air inside the vehicle may become hazardous to the driver (i.e. the car in front giving off toxic carbon monoxide), it can immediately shut off the air intake. This happens without the driver having to do anything whatsoever. This revolutionary idea, combined with the pollen filters that will be equipped in the ventilation system, always guarantee the driver will be enjoying much cleaner air at all times inside his or her car in comparison to that outside the car. Nick Connor, managing director of Volvo Car UK, spoke out on how the new technology with be advantageous to hay fever sufferers on the road and said, “Now that some warmer weather has arrived, albeit a few months late, it's worth reminding drivers that a Volvo has been designed from the outset to keep the causes of hay fever at bay whilst in the car. As well as the health aspects of not breathing in pollen, ozone and hydrocarbons, the safety benefits associated with a driver avoiding long bouts of sneezing, whilst driving at speed on a motorway shouldn't be underestimated. Hay fever suffering company car drivers should find particular solace in driving a Volvo.” The good news comes at a time when the NHS Direct have recently stated they have experienced a 20% surge in extra telephone calls from those suffering with hay fever. NHS Direct also warn drivers that being on the road between 5am and 10am is the most dangerous period of the day for aggravating their hay fever symptoms due to more pollen being released from trees and grass in those five hours compared to the rest of the day. Volvo’s pioneering move will now hopefully prove effective in increasing the safety for those drivers with hay fever, and other people on the roads. There are obvious major benefits to be seen when drivers can avoid sneezing at the wheel from the result of hay fever. Imagine if somebody had a sneezing fit from unhealthy air entering their car and triggering symptoms. It is not unthinkable to suggest that this momentary lapse in concentration may prove fatal. What exactly is hay fever though you may ask? Well, hay fever is caused by an allergy to pollen. Usual characteristics include a runny, itchy and/or blocked nose, frequent sneezing and itchy/red/watery eyes. Whilst the symptoms of hay fever may be mild, unfortunately they can interfere with your school or work life, and effect your day to do activities, including your ability to drive. Even worse – if you have asthma, the asthma symptoms you experience may get worse when you have hay fever. Sometimes, asthma symptoms only come to prominence when you have hay fever. The best method of combating both conditions is to speak to a health professional that can help you to formulate an action plan.  This will help manage your symptoms, and avoid potential triggers. Moreover, you should always make sure you have more than an adequate supply of important hay fever medications such as Nasonex nasal spray, Loratadine and Alomide eye drops, and for asthma - vital preventer and reliever inhalers.