18 January 2012

Keep away from London during the Olympics

The Independent seems to be getting worked up about the perils of the Olympics.  First, on Monday they published this story:
Preparations are being made to deal with a possible epidemic of infectious disease during the London Olympics, with officials concerned at the prospect of an outbreak of unusual illnesses.
The Health Protection Agency has set up a monitoring system of hospital admissions and concerns raised with GPs, to alert doctors to the first signs of mass contagion. With athletes and spectators set to descend on Britain from across the world this summer, a huge public health campaign is also being launched to help prevent this occurring.
On the same day, there was another scare:
Olympic athletes could suffer impaired performance times and become ill as a result of London's unacceptably high levels of air pollution, leading respiratory scientists are warning.
Fears are growing that during the Games, beginning in July, athletes, who take in much more air than a sedentary person, will take in high levels of pollutants such as particulates, nitrogen dioxide and ozone, and could suffer pulmonary irritation, chest pain and decreased lung capacity.
And this morning, we read of yet another problem:
It is the issue that has nagged at the minds of the organisers of London 2012 from the very beginning: can they get people to the Games on time? And home again, while at the same time not condemning the inhabitants of the capital to two weeks of traffic jams and increasing frustration with the greatest sporting show on earth?
Locog – the London organising committee – may have its worst fears realised with a report today warning that the opening weekend of the Games could see a combination of circumstances leading to the capital's being caught in the "perfect traffic storm". The city will also have to cope with increased congestion of over 30 per cent throughout the Games, meaning journeys that will take up to a third longer.
All in all, it doesn't sound promising ...

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