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Revista Cubana de Higiene y Epidemiología

On-line version ISSN 1561-3003


BARCELO PEREZ, Carlos; GUZMAN PINEIRO, Raisa; GONZALEZ SANCHEZ, Yamile  and  RAMIREZ SOTOLONGO, Juan C. Characterization of the physical environment in petrohouses from the village of "Simón Bolívar" in the province of Cienfuegos (2008-2009). Rev Cubana Hig Epidemiol [online]. 2014, vol.52, n.1, pp.106-119. ISSN 1561-3003.

Petrohouses have been built in several villages in the country. These houses are made of polyvinyl chloride, filled with raft concrete and covered with aluminum sheets coated with asphalt paper on both sides. The health effects of polyvinyl chloride as a construction material is a matter of controversy. With the purpose of carrying out a health characterization of the physical environment in Cienfuegos petrohouses, a descriptive study was conducted during two weeks selected from the dry and wet seasons of 2008 and 2009. Physical risk factors were monitored in a sample of 6 houses selected on the basis of expert opinion, of the total 104 houses in the village, according to their location in the rows: front, mid and end positions. The variables studied were noise, magnetic component of the low frequency electromagnetic field, natural and artificial lighting, microclimate and wind penetration. Monitoring was evaluated with statistical descriptors, regression models, variance and bivariate power spectrum, with the statistical software SPSS v. 17.0 and Statistica v. 8.0. In the dry season, air temperature is higher in the main room of houses with facades facing the south. In both seasons, temperature and relative humidity values are higher inside the houses than outside. Covers and walls heat up when hit by the sun. Natural lighting coefficients show high reflection values. Electromagnetic field values are low. In the dry season, sound levels show moderate acoustic contamination. It is concluded that the microclimate inside houses during the day is uncomfortable.

Keywords : petrohouses; house; temperature; humidity; wind; lighting; noise; extremely low frequency fields.

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