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Chiang Mai’s air pollution sends over 30,000 to hospital, ranked worst in world today

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Chiang Mai’s air pollution sends over 30,000 to hospital, ranked worst in world today | Thaiger

Air pollution in Chiang Mai, in northern Thailand, is allegedly responsible for over 30,000 people visiting the hospital seeking treatment for respiratory illnesses. The city, known for its burning season, that blankets the air with smoke, has recently taken the top spot of having the worst air quality in the world. The IQ AirVisual air monitoring website listed Chiang Mai this morning as having the worst pollution, as it tracks air quality in real time.

The city’s air quality has consistently been ranked in the top 3 of the world’s worst cities in terms of pollution since the start of this month, an annual listing at this time of the year. IQ AirVisual even says it has taken the top spot for recent days. The Thailand Meteorological Department has also said that the poor air quality will last for another week due to the southern west wind current being too light to knock out the dust particles that are trapped by cool weather in the evenings. Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Lampang, Mae Hong Son, Tak and Phayao provinces are being affected the most due to the smog. Chiang Mai city area has a particular problem being in a valley which can trap the bad air.

Chaing Mai health officials say over 31,000 people have sought medical treatment for respiratory issues, such as cardiovascular disease as well as other eye and skin inflammatory diseases due to the smog.

The northern region has 926 hotspots, with Mae Hong Son having the most at 442, followed by Chiang Mai and Tak. The cause of the pollution is mainly due to wildfires sprouting up as a result of open burning across the border in Myanmar forests and locally around northern farms in Thailand. A taskforce has been deployed to 5 districts in Chiang Mai to deal with the haze until tomorrow, with rangers also setting out to extinguish wildfires in Lampang province on Phrabat Mountain.

Currently, Chiang Mai has an air quality index of 193, being considered in the unhealthy zone, with a PM2.5 concentration of 137.4 µg/m³. USAQI is an Air Quality Index used by the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

SOURCE: Chiang Rai Times

Chiang Mai's air pollution sends over 30,000 to hospital, ranked worst in world today | News by Thaiger

The fire map, in real time, which shows the many fires ablaze across the border in Myanmar.

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18 Comments

18 Comments

  1. Avatar

    B.T.

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 10:30 am

    Another failure of clueless government,grabbing money made them to busy plus incompetence.They can’t even enforce the law.

  2. Avatar

    Fred glue

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 10:43 am

    Defend this one IJ, why do people go there it’s beyond me….

  3. Avatar

    Gosport

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 11:08 am

    Allegedly.

  4. Avatar

    Amy Sukwan

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 11:50 am

    Interesting. I remember last summer during California’s wildfires large particulate matter logged in at 207 in Las Vegas. The sun was a haze of orange for days. It received almost no attention in the US mainstream press. There are multiple measures of air quality but in general fires plus total lack of rain is bad…

  5. Avatar

    Geoff

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 1:21 pm

    31,000!? In any normal country that would be a disaster and something would be done about it. But here….

  6. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 2:15 pm

    Can they not restrict lighting fire to the times when the weather is windy, or is it never windy when they want to light the fires?
    Well, the farmers make money. The tourist hotels do not.

  7. Avatar

    Stardust

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 2:23 pm

    All junta govern countries in the world and history were failed states. All ended up in destroying their country and people. And all had the same symptoms what leads to the collapse like corruption, incompetance, mismanagement, all kind of crimes and violence, no human rights,human trafficking and forced slavery, killing of innocent people, no functional justice system, pollution and destroying of the natural resources. They have always the same patterns. And same gangster junta we can see now in Myanmar. They are criminals who should be brought into jail

  8. Avatar

    Issan John

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 3:44 pm

    “Defend this one IJ, why do people go there it’s beyond me….”

    Too much glue again, Fred, as I’ve no idea why you imagine I’d “defend” it.

  9. Avatar

    Craig

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 3:50 pm

    Bad forest fires in California/the West last year. Here, it’s every ~Feb on and smokey. When I first traveled here (it was March), I had no clue there were mountains nearby. 555. Welcome to the burning season. It’s cheaper to burn and people can afford it.

  10. Avatar

    Sarwardee Ken

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 7:46 pm

    Get Prayut to spray these fires instead of the journalists

  11. Avatar

    James R

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 8:48 pm

    As I said before I know many people who live in Chiang Mai and have left already as they normally do each year and go to Hua Hin.

    But not for a week as this article suggests, they know it goes on for at least three months each year.

  12. Avatar

    MARK GOODYEAR

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 9:44 pm

    issan rubber johnnie… i think its because you defend everything that’s Thai!!

  13. Avatar

    Sierra

    Wednesday, March 10, 2021 at 10:49 pm

    Thailand’s air is a joke now. A toxic mess for five months a year. Unlivable. Thai people sacrifice their health and wellbeing for a few fat cats benefiting from agricultural burning. What a disgrace

  14. Avatar

    dispensed

    Thursday, March 11, 2021 at 6:23 am

    If 30,000 people went to the hospital for covid illness in one day, it would be sensationalized as an unprecedented public health disaster. Fake journos would be stamping their feet demanding that we all wear double masks and suh-suh-suh-suh-TAHY HOME!

    Since it’s just air pollution, we get a collective shrug.

  15. Avatar

    vic

    Thursday, March 11, 2021 at 11:09 am

    Another piece of shitty journalism based on bad copy/paste.
    31.000 cases in how many days?
    In a short period this would have collapsed the entire system in Thailand. If this happened for a flu (covid?) the country would have banned any activity forever.
    This is the worse and more confused online magazine on the market, that worth to be visite only to acknowledge what’s the lowest point of journalism…

  16. Avatar

    Issan John

    Thursday, March 11, 2021 at 1:36 pm

    ” i think its because you defend everything that’s Thai!!”

    You clearly don’t “think” very much, Mark G.

    If it’s justifiable and I agree, I “defend” it, if it’s not I don’t.

    Sorry if that’s beyond you.

  17. Avatar

    James R

    Friday, March 12, 2021 at 2:03 am

    Issan John

    It does appear on many occasions you praise Thailand unconditionally and rubbish anything relating to your own country of origin, the UK.

  18. Avatar

    Steve

    Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 12:32 pm

    Why do they not light the fires at night when people are asleep, that way peole do not have to walk around during the daytime breathing in poluted air. Problem solved!

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Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Chiang Mai. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Ann Carter is an award-winning journalist from the United States with over 12 years experience in print and broadcast news. Her work has been featured in America, China and Thailand as she has worked internationally at major news stations as a writer and producer. Carter graduated from the Walter Williams Missouri School of Journalism in the USA.

Chiang Mai

Tourism officials slash Songkran travel expectations by half

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Tourism officials slash Songkran travel expectations by half | Thaiger

The TAT, ever the optimists regarding anything tourism related, even domestic tourism, predict that the Bangkok clusters that have emerged in the week before the Songkran break could reduce traffic and spending by up to half.

Today the CCSA is reporting 789 new infections and one additional death. 522 were local infections, mostly walk-ins to Bangkok hospitals, 259 were discovered through track and tracing. The remaining 8 were found in quarantine from overseas arrivals. In Phuket, another 17 cases have been reported today, taking the island’s week total to 43.

Tourism officials slash Songkran travel expectations by half | News by ThaigerGRAPH: Worldometer figures for Thailand, up to April 9

A 68 year old man from Nakhon Pathom province died on April 4 but wasn’t reported until today. The CCSA report that he died from Covid and “complications”. 33 other former patients have recovered and been discharged.

Last week the TAT estimated 3.2 million domestic trips would circulate 12 billion baht for the Thai economy. But the Tourism Authority has now slashed their estimates by half after hotels, airlines and bus companies reported mass cancellations in the last few days. Other provinces are reporting less than 20% cancellations. Although this weekend will see a lot of travel, Songkran doesn’t formally start until next Tuesday and the TAT expect there could be additional fallout as travellers decide to have a staycation for Songkran instead heading home.

Bangkok Post reports that 70% of travellers to Prachuap Khiri Khan and Hua Hin have already cancelled hotel bookings. Similar cancellations have been reported in Pattaya, Phuket and Chiang Mai. Many other provinces, particularly in the north east and north, are also enforcing quarantine on arrivals or additional paperwork to try and protect their provinces from any of the Bangkok clusters.

8 north eastern provinces rare now requiring 10 or 14 day quarantine periods for anyone arriving from areas where new clusters have been reported. Chiang Mai provincial officials say that tourists from Samut Prakan, Nakhon Pathom, Bangkok, Pathum Thani and Nonthaburi – basically Bangkok and surrounding provinces – must complete a 14 day mandatory quarantine or conduct a test for Covid when they arrive.

The reality is that the travel and quarantine changes are outstripping the ability to communicate them all. Anyone crossing into other provinces in the next few day, especially if you’re travelling from Bangkok and surrounding provincial ‘red zones’ can expect some additional paperwork or a Covid test. Or even quarantine.

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

All new Covid-19 infections in Chiang Mai are linked to nightlife venues

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All new Covid-19 infections in Chiang Mai are linked to nightlife venues | Thaiger
Stock photo via Pixabay

All of the new Covid-19 infections reported by health officials in Chiang Mai yesterday are linked to local nightlife venues. Over the past few days, 47 cases linked to bars and nightclubs have been confirmed, including the 36 new cases reported yesterday by the provincial communicable disease control panel.

With the rise of infections linked to entertainment venues, Chiang Mai authorities decided to close clubs, pubs, karaoke bars and other entertainment venues for the next week. Alcohol sales are also banned for the next 7 days. A field hospital has been set up at the Chiang Mai International Exhibition and Convention Centre to care for a potential influx of Covid-19 patients.

“Those travelling to Chiang Mai from provinces considered the highest risk of infection, including Bangkok, Nonthaburi, Samut Prakan, Pathum Thani and Nakhon Pathom, must self-isolate for 14 days.”

The recent infections are linked to 7 venues in the area including Warm Up Cafe Chiang Mai, Tha Chang Café Chiang Mai, DC Chiang Mai, Infinity Club Chiang Mai, Ground, Living Machine and Consol’s Garden.

“Those who visited the venues are asked to go to a local hospital for a Covid-19 test.”

SOURCES: Bangkok Post | Nation Thailand

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Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai records 6 new infections after nearly 3 months virus-free

Maya Taylor

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Chiang Mai records 6 new infections after nearly 3 months virus-free | Thaiger
PHOTO: Yenting Lin on Flickr

After nearly 3 months without any Covid-19 infections, the northern province of Chiang Mai is once again having to implement measures to suppress the virus after recording 6 new cases. 4 cases were reported on Monday, 3 of which are linked to nightlife venues in Bangkok and the central province of Nonthaburi. Another 2 cases were recorded yesterday, bringing the total in the province to 75.

The Bangkok Post reports that health officials are using a mobile testing unit to test around 90 employees at various nightlife venues, in an effort to boost confidence among visitors to the area. Panlop Saechiew from Chiang Mai’s tourism industry council says his team is working with tourism operators to assess the situation, admitting that the resurgence of the virus after 83 days will have a negative impact on the sector.

However, he points out that none of the patients visited nightlife venues in Chiang Mai or attended any other large gatherings while infected. Some went to a shopping mall, where disease prevention measures are usually quite strict, and some visited an outdoor market, where the chances of transmission are low due to the well-ventilated environment. Panlop says he’s hopeful the situation can be brought under control soon, adding that Songkran bookings appear unaffected for now.

Meanwhile, Chiang Mai health officials have ordered bars and restaurants serving alcohol to close by 11pm from now until April 30.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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