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Air Pollution

Bangkok public schools closed until Friday due to air quality

Jack Burton

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PHOTO: A thick haze envelops Bangkok - The Nation

Public schools in the Bangkok municipality have been ordered shut until Friday due to severe air pollution in the nation’s capital. Air quality in the city worsened today and the situation is likely to continue due to poor air circulation and accumulation of PM2.5 dust in the atmosphere. Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA) spokesman Pongsakorn Kwanmuang said today that the city will ask high-rise and electric train construction sites to suspend operations until Friday, the second such move in recent weeks.

Police have been requested to stop trucks of six wheels or more from accessing Bangkok’s Ratchadapisek ring road until midnight on Thursday and to set up roadblocks to check vehicle emissions. Officials and police will patrol open areas to ensure there is no outdoor burning, and city workers will spray water into the air and on roads to wash away dust.

The whole of Bangkok and its vicinity were found to contain excessive amounts of PM2.5 dust this morning, measured at between 55-90 microns per cubic metre, according to the Pollution Control Department (PCD), higher than Thailand’s threshold of 50, wand well above the World Health Organisation’s standard of 25.

In the eastern province of Rayong, the PCD reported this morning that air quality readings showed levels of PM2.5 ranging from 58 to 118 microns in Tambon Huay Pong, Tambon Noen Phra, Tambon Tapong and Tambon Map Ta Pud in Muang district and Tambon Tha Toom in Sri Mahapo district.

The highest level of PM 2.5 was reported in the northernmost province of Mae Hong Son, at 125.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

 

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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

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