Songkhla – Haze from Indonesia’s forests is currently blanketing two southern provinces of Thailand. In Songkhla, the PM 2.5 (particulate matter) level has exceeded the standard at 57 micrograms per cubic meter and the air pollution has started to affect people’s health.
Songkhla zoo is concerned about animals in the zoo, especially birds and mammals whose respiratory systems might be affected by the haze. Trucks have sprayed water in the zoo’s aviaries to get rid of the haze and keep the birds cool. All zoo personnel wear health masks while working outdoors.
Thanitphol Chaiyanan, adviser to the deputy public health minister, followed up on the haze situation in the southern region and advised public health volunteers to learn and understand about healthcare for their family and themselves. Hat Yai district has become a pilot site for a healthcare campaign, in the face of the forest haze, with public health volunteers working in an integrated fashion with all relevant sectors.
In Yala the situation has started to improve, though the haze could still be seen with the naked eye on Friday. If it rains, the haze will be dispersed and the situation will gradually improve. Over 1,000 residents of Yala City have received health masks from public health units.