People, Travel

Dust Storms Taking Toll on Kermanshah Tourism

Dust Storms Taking Toll on Kermanshah TourismDust Storms Taking Toll on Kermanshah Tourism

Recent dust storms across the western provinces of Iran have had a negative impact on tourism in Kermanshah Province, as the number of visitors to the province’s attractions has significantly dropped, said an official at the provincial office of Iran’s Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization.

“Dust storms affect all aspects of human life, including travel and tourism,” said Alireza Moradi Bisotouni, tourism deputy at Kermanshah’s ICHHTO, ISNA reported.

“Naturally, families would never travel to a destination for leisure where they could face health risks and would rather stay home,” he added.

Apart from impacting tourist numbers, dust storms gradually erode the surface of historical structures, especially where they contain acidic particles.  

Dust storms have crippled western Iran, including Kermanshah, Khuzestan, Ilam, Kurdestan and Bushehr provinces, for many days.

On Thursday and Friday, Kermanshah experienced the most polluted days of the current Iranian year (started 20 March) with a PM10 concentration of 790 µg/m3, roughly six times greater than the acceptable daily average of 150 µg/m3.

Behistun Inscription, Taq Bostan rock reliefs and Qajar-era monuments are among major historical structures in Kermanshah currently threatened by sandstorms.