The Singapore haze is now the worst in seven years. The peak PSI reached 155 at 10:00 pm, exceeding the 2006 peak of 150.
The skies are saturated with an unsightly and toxic haze, and the air smells like smoke. Singapore's National Environment Agency has issued a warning to children and the elderly to avoid venturing outdoors. Those who must go outside are warned against strenuous physical activity.
As reported by MSN, residents with existing lung ailments are also warned to avoid the going outside. Dr Joyce Liang offers further advice for dealing with the Singapore haze:
"Now's not a very good time to be playing in the pool or riding a bike ... Sometimes the mask may offer them a false sense of security but in actual fact, the paper mask ... are not really useful because they will not cut off the particulate matter ... if you have to be outdoors, you may have to consider using the N95 mask."
The Ministry of Manpower reminds employers that the Workplace Safety and Health Act makes them responsible for the health and safety of their employees. The haze raises specific concerns for those working outdoors.
Currently, no serious illness or injuries have been reported as a result of the Singapore haze.
As reported by Yahoo, the haze is currently affecting Singapore and Malaysia. The haze has significantly increased as the result of forest fires burning in Indonesia. Addressing blame for the haze, Indonesian authorities contend that they are doing everything in their power to contain the blazes. However, they will not deploy water-dropping aircraft to other localities until they receive a specific request.
Rain, which was expected over the weekend, would have cleared some of the Singapore haze. However, the rain never came, and now officials are concerned that the problem will only get worse.
Over 130 fires continue to burn on Sumatra. Dry conditions and wind only fuel the fire. As the fires continue, the Singapore haze will become increasingly worse.There is little that can be done to diminish the haze at this time. Therefore, residents are reminded to practice caution when going outside. Parents and family members are encouraged to keep an eye on children and the elderly.
[Image via Wikimedia]