As at 5pm yesterday, Cheras in Kuala Lumpur was classified as unhealthy, joining Kuala Selangor, Port Klang and Shah Alam.
Cheras recorded a reading of 105 in the Air Pollution Index, while the reading at Port Klang was the highest in the country at 147, followed by Kuala Selangor (129) and Shah Alam (120).
At 11am yesterday, three places in Selangor recorded unhealthy air quality level, with the haze situation worsening in the peninsula due to the current hot spell and open burning in northern and central Sumatra.
Checks with the Department of Environment website listed Kuala Selangor recording the highest Air Pollutant Index reading at 131, followed by Port Klang (130) and Shah Alam (106).
A reading of 101 or more is unhealthy while between 51 and 100 is considered moderate.
A check on the hotspots found some in central and northen Sumatra during the current hot spell. Normally open burning activities are conducted to clear agricultural land. From the map it is detected that there are also open burning activities in areas in southern, central and the east coast of peninsular Malaysia.
In a related development, Selangor state executive councillor Elizabeth Wong said the wind direction from Sumatra has made the situation much more worse as the haze conditions in the three places of Selangor had reached an unhealthy level.
“In Peninsular Malaysia, only five hotspots have been detected; where only one of them in Selangor, specifically in Pulau Kempas, Kuala Langat. The Fire and Rescue Services Department is currently working to control the burning,” said Wong, who looks after the environment portfolio.
“Even though the Selangor government cannot control burning activity outside of our borders, we will continue to work with the relevant agencies to reduce the impact of the haze,” she said, adding the state has been monitoring the situation since May with the coming of the dry season.
In view of the unhealthy air quality levels, Wong advised members of the public to reduce outdoor activities where possible, especially senior citizens and children.
“The Selangor government is also issuing a warning to avoid any open burning as it would worsen the situation,” she said, adding that they can go here for detailed information on the hotspots.