By Pratch Rujivanarom
The Pollution Control Department’s (PCD) data for particulate matter smaller than 2.5 microns (PM2.5) in Bangkok showed that the PM2.5 daily average level as of Monday afternoon was higher than Thailand’s safe standard of 50 micrograms per cubic metre of air at every air-quality monitoring station that was in operation, while two stations were unable to take measurements due to technical issues.
It was found that Thon Buri district had the highest PM2.5 daily average at 67.91 micrograms, while the PM2.5 level in Pathumwan district stood at 56.79 micrograms and Wang Thonglang district recorded 55.06 micrograms.
Prior to the station encountering technical problems, the last report from Bang Na district was on Friday, while air-quality measurements have not been made by the Phaya Thai station since January 31.
Meanwhile, the international air-pollution monitoring websitehttp://aqicn.org/ revealed on Monday that as of 1pm, the hourly PM2.5 level in Bangkok had reached the unhealthy level of 154.
Both sources of air-quality monitoring indicated a similar alarming trend: that the air quality in Bangkok on Monday was degrading again, despite light rain of up to 13 millimetres in many parts of the capital the previous day.
Therefore, the PCD issued an alert for people with health vulnerabilities in Bangkok to avoid outdoor activities and stay indoors.
The agency also predicted that air quality in the capital would remain high, as the Meteorological Department forecast that Bangkok would continue to experience cold and moist weather, causing a build-up of pollution in the atmosphere.
As on the effort to relieve air pollution in Bangkok, Royal Rainmaking and Agricultural Aviation Department has started the first rainmaking flight on Monday in order to let the rain wash down the very fine particulate in the air. The rainmaking squadron will continue this mission until this weekend or until the air pollution situation is resolved.