Air quality chart shows startling drop in pollution levels since burst water main closed Otley Road

Part of Otley Road was shut while contractors repaired the burst water main (photo: Robyn Vinter)
Part of Otley Road was shut while contractors repaired the burst water main (photo: Robyn Vinter)
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Drivers have been faced with disruption after a burst water main closed Otley Road in Headingley for two days while repairs take place.

But there has been one major advantage of the sudden, enforced drop in traffic - air quality levels have improved drastically.

Here's how big the Headingley sinkhole is

Air Quality England operate a kerbside monitoring station on the Otley Road/Headingley Lane junction - one of the busiest routes into Leeds.

They measure levels of pollutants such as nitric oxide and nitrogen dioxide.

Burst water main reveals forgotten tram tracks beneath Otley Road

A large hole opened up in the road surface after a water pipe burst underground

A large hole opened up in the road surface after a water pipe burst underground

The AQE website provides data for the week beginning June 2. A chart showing the levels of nitrogen dioxide - a pollutant which can he toxic in high doses and is caused by the burning of fossil fuels - clearly indicates a correlation between the amount of traffic using the road and the air quality levels.

Pollution levels spiked from Monday onwards when the route would normally see the busiest commuter flows - but dropped drastically on Thursday, when the large hole opened up on Otley Road and the highway was shut for safety reasons, and fell below weekend levels.

'I am Doner' in Headingley, which has just won the Just Eat Best Delivery award at the British Kebab Awards and also been shortlisted in the Best Newcomer Outside London and Best Takeaway Outside London categories.'28th Febuary 2016.'Picture Jonathan Gawthorpe

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