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Bangkok air pollution predicted to reach “unhealthy” levels

Caitlin Ashworth

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At least some good news, Bangkok’s air quality has improved during the lockdown period. In January, it was listed as the “third most polluted city in the world.” By April, air pollution levels dropped down to a “safe” and “healthy”, according to the US Air Quality Index, or AQI. Now the bad news, forecasts predict Bangkok’s air pollution will reach “unhealthy” levels again.

Air with containing low levels of the air pollutant PM2.5 is considered “safe.” PM 2.5 is fine particulate matter less than 2.5 micrometres in diameter. At high levels, it can be harmful to people’s health. AQI is measured by the concentration of air pollutants. An AQI at 0 to 50 is considered safe, while 300 and up is considered dangerous…

  • 0-50: Good
  • 51-100: Moderate
  • 101-150:Unhealthy for sensitive groups
  • 151-200: Unhealthy
  • 201-300: Very unhealthy
  • 301-500: Hazardous

Just yesterday, Bangkok was listed as the 16th city with the worst air quality in the world on Air Visuals with an AQI of 108 with PM 2.5 at 38 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3). This morning, Bangkok’s air quality was reported at a “moderate” level with an AQI of 95, according to Air Visuals.

Another website, through the World Air Quality Index project, reported the city’s AQI at 129, a level that can be harmful to sensitive groups. Both websites forecast the AQI to increase by tonight to “unhealthy” levels that could be harmful to someone’s health. Levels are expected to increase today to an AQI of 158 to 171.

The Pollution Control Department says the air quality in Bangkok fluctuates. While AQI was reported at a fairly high level yesterday, Bangkok has been between a “good” and “moderate” level with PM2.5 at around 20 to 42 µg/m3 detected by 71 air quality stations, according to the department.

The top 5 cities with the worst air quality, as of this morning on Air Visuals, are Delhi, India with 192 AQI; Shenyang, China with 186 AQI; Beijing, China with 174 AQI; Chongqing, China with 172 AQI and Chengdu, China with 167 AQI.

Bangkok air pollution predicted to reach "unhealthy" levels | News by Thaiger

Pollution forecast for the week of October 26 to November 1, according to the World Air Quality Index project. Red means air pollution at “unhealthy” levels and orange means air pollution at levels “unhealthy for sensitive groups.”

SOURCES: Nation Thailand | Air Visuals | World Air Quality Index project

 

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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Monday, October 26, 2020 at 12:09 pm

    Easily solved, like the flooding. But the Thais will not. They are incapable.

    • Avatar

      Paul

      Tuesday, October 27, 2020 at 12:21 pm

      How lucky you are to come from a very capable country and I guess you are so capable yourself that you will help them.

  2. Avatar

    Pete

    Monday, October 26, 2020 at 1:53 pm

    Which Apps are you referring to? There are many such air quality measurement Apps but I have yet to find one that is use-friendly and reliable. Thanks for any recommendations.

  3. Avatar

    Don R

    Friday, October 30, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    Considering that 7 million people die from air pollution every year, the media should run this story every day for a year straight, advocating for masks and shutdowns of everything that produces emissions…

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

Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Thailand

UPDATE: 2 Americans and a Thai arrested over Bangkok kidnap attempt, Thai policeman involved | VIDEO

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Screenshot: THAICRIME

UPDATE:

Following up from the earlier story involving 2 Americans, a Thai, a Taiwanese businessman, and an Israeli security goon, we have the following update (original story below)…

Police have examined CCTV from the restaurant in Thong Lor where the Taiwanese businessman was kidnapped. It’s also been revealed that a “senior Thai policeman” was involved in the alleged abduction case. The abduction took place on March 28.

The meeting had been called to “resolve” some disagreements over a large purchase of rubber gloves that had gone wrong.

After arriving at a meeting at the L’Oliva restaurant in Sukhumvit Soi 26, Mr. Wen Yu Chung was manhandled, put in a headlock and dragged out of the premises. Daily News reports that a “lieutenant colonel” ranked Thai policeman was also captured on the CCTV supervising the events as they happened inside the restaurant. He is reported as being a former traffic policeman.

Mr. Chung was then held to ransom at the condo NT Court. Attempts were made to contact Mr Chung’s family and business associates to extract a ransom – allegedly 1 and 2 million baht – but they refused to pay.

The 3 men have been identified as 41 year old Jeremy Hughes Manchester, 52 year old Louis William Ziskin, both Americans, and Ekbodin Prasitnarit, Thai.

Mr Louis Ziskin has a somewhat chequered history with his story catalogued on Wikipedia. Summarised…

Ziskin was taken into custody in December 7, 2000 and charged over transactions from November 1999 to December 22, 1999. Ziskin was convicted of smuggling 700 pounds of ecstasy into Southern California via FedEx and other various shipping companies, the largest-ever US government seizure of the drug. There was another indictment a year later.

Following his incarceration, Ziskin lost a double jeopardy appeal for the second indictment. The US government settled all claims against Ziskin for a 188 month sentence and a US$9 million fine.

Daily News also reported a man ‘Mike’ who allegedly invited the policeman to be involved in the incident. Earlier this man was described as “Mr. Michael Greenberg, an Israeli operating a detective company”.

Here’s video showing the arrest of Mr. Ziskin…

EARLIER STORY:

Thai police have arrested 2 American citizens and a Thai for the alleged kidnap of a Taiwanese businessman for ransom. 5 other arrest warrants are also waiting to be executed over the incident. Police allege a “business conflict” over the purchase of plastic ‘nitrile’ gloves as the motive.

The 3 men have been identified as 41 year old Jeremy Hughes Manchester, 52 year old Louis William Ziskin, both Americans, and Ekbodin Prasitnarit, Thai. All 3 have denied the charges including illegal assembly, attempted murder, abduction for ransom and extortion. They were formally charged at the Thong Lor police.

According to Bangkok Post, in late 2020 Mr Ziskin appointed the Collection Company to negotiate the purchase of a large quantity of plastic gloves with the Paddy The Room Trading Company.

Police allege that there was an ongoing conflict between the two sides which was responsible for Mr Ziskin accumulating 93 million baht in damages.. So, according to police, Mr Ziskin hired Mr. Michael Greenberg, an Israeli operating a detective company in Thailand to negotiate and retrieve the losses.

Police allege that Mr Greenberg hired Thai and foreign collaborators to plan an abduction as leverage in the retrieval of their losses. They contacted a 60 year old Taiwanese man from the Collection Company in Thailand to procure a supply of rubber gloves from Paddy The Room Trading Company.

They made an appointment to meet Wen Yu Chung at a restaurant in Bangkok’s in Bangkok’s Tong Lor are off Sukhumvit Road on March 28. Police allege that Mr Greenberg and hired associates arrived, handcuffed the Taiwanese businessman and then took him to the NT Place, 200 metres further south down the same Soi, Sukhumvit 36.

They then called Mr Chung’s boss demanding US$2 million, and then called the man’s family demanding another US$1 million. Both contacted police and did nothing to accede to the demands for ransom..

The abductors then headed to a restaurant in Soi 24, with Mr. Chung, eventually letting him go. The Taiwanese man went, first to hospital, then to Thong Lor police station to relate his story. Eventually 8 arrest warrants were issued over the alleged abduction. Soon after police arrested Mr Manchester, Mr Ziskin and Mr Ekbodin.

We’ll continue to follow this story.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Covid-19 spreads to 12 Thailand prisons infecting 9,789 people

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Chiang Mai prison / Photo via Department of Corrections ประชาสัมพันธ์ กรมราชทัณฑ์

Over the past week, 12 prisons in Thailand have reported Covid-19 infections infecting thousands of inmates. Out of the 9,789 Covid-19 infections reported by the Department of Corrections, nearly 4,000 cases were reported at the Chiang Mai Central Prison.

Outbreaks at the Bangkok Remand Prison and Central Women’s Correctional Institution were first reported last week after a pro-democracy protest leader announced that she tested positive for Covid-19 a week after she was released from the women’s prison. She had been held in detention for 8 weeks awaiting trial for lese majeste charges which carry an up to 15 year prison sentence for insulting or defaming the Thai Monarchy.

At the Central Women’s Correctional Institution, where 1,039 people are infected, the outbreak started from a new inmate who was infected with the coronavirus, the department’s director general said in an earlier statement. At the Bangkok Remand Prison, where 1,960 people are infected, a department official who was infected with Covid-19 apparently caused the outbreak infecting more than half the prison population.

Following the news of the Covid-19 outbreaks at 2 Bangkok prisons, human rights activists have called on Thai authorities to reduce overcrowding in the prisons, a longstanding problem in Thailand, by releasing inmates who are incarcerated on minor charges or who are being held in court detention for non-violent offences.

In an earlier statement, the Human Rights Watch said that Thai authorities need to act immediately to make sure inmates who are infected with Covid-19 get equal and adequate health care, which is required under international law.

Most of the infected inmates are being treated at field hospitals set up outside the prison, or at the Department of Corrections hospital, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Natapanu Nopakun said during today’s Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration meeting. Those in serious condition have been admitted to hospitals, he said.

Natapanu added that the Thai government is providing adequate health care for the infected inmates in line with legal standards.

Prison Covid-19 cases
Chiang Mai Central Prison 3,929
Bangkok Remand Prison 1,960
Central Women’s Correctional Institution 1,039
Khlong Prem Central Prison 1,016
Thon Buri Remand Prison 1,725
Nonthaburi Central Prison 59
Chachoengsao Central Prison 43
Central Special Treatment Centre 12
Min Buri Prison 2
Narathawit Prison 2
Mae Sot Prison 1
Samut Prakan Central Prison 1

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Fourth prison Covid-19 outbreak: 1,725 inmates infected at Thonburi prison

Thaiger

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Bangkok Remand Prison / Google

Thailand’s Department of Corrections is now tackling Covid-19 outbreaks at 4 prisons. Over the weekend, more than 1,700 Covid-19 infections were detected at the Thonburi Remand Prison, adding to the more than 3,000 infections at the Klong Prem Central Prison, Bangkok Remand Prison and Central Women’s Correctional Institution.

Prior to the recent prison Covid-19 clusters, hundreds of inmates at prisons in Chiang Mai and the southern province Narathiwat tested positive for the coronavirus. Human rights activists have called on Thai authorities to tackle the longstanding problem of overcrowded prisons and to release inmates who are detained for minor offenses or who are awaiting trial for non-violent crimes.

Last week, the department announced the Covid-19 outbreaks at the Bangkok Remand Prison and Central Women’s Correctional Institution, infecting a total of 2,835 inmates. The news came out after a pro-democracy protest leader tested positive for Covid-19 a week after she was released from detention.

Another Covid-19 outbreak infecting 506 people was reported at the Klong Prem Central Prison, a maximum security prison in Bangkok’s Chatuchak district on the same grounds as the Central Women’s Correctional Institution.

On Saturday, the department reported that 621 inmates at the Thonburi prison had contracted Covid-19. Another 1,104 more infections at the prison were confirmed yesterday. There are 4,169 inmates at the Thonburi prison and 1,725 of them are currently infected with the coronavirus.

At the Thonburi prison, most of the infected inmates are either asymptomatic, or just have mild symptoms. Inmates with coronavirus symptoms are taking the anti-viral drug Favipiravir.

SOURCE: Thai PBS

 

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