Pollution alert in Durham City

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HIGH levels of pollution have been discovered in parts of Durham city.

The air around the A690 east of Highgate, along Gilesgate, east of Gilesgate roundabout and up Sunderland Road to Dragon Road was found to have high levels of nitrogen oxide.

By law, the area has had to be declared an air quality management area (AQMA) and council bosses will bring in measures to control the pollution.

The level of the gas, produced by vehicle exhausts, exceeds the nationally recommended levels during peak times.

Durham County Council is now set to form a group to combat the issue.

Joanne Walker, head of environment, health and consumer protection, said: “It is important to say straight away there is absolutely no need for concern.

“It is understandable that people may worry when they hear about AQMAs but this is about identifying a potential issue early and ensuring the council takes appropriate steps to address it.”

The council will discuss the issue at a cabinet meeting at County Hall in Durham on Wednesday at 10am.