People Plagued by Miri Haze as AQI Reaches Hazardous Levels – Here’s How To Stay Healthy
The Miri haze situation has become alarming. Parts of Miri have reached soaring AQI (Air Quality Index) levels in the high 300s. The worst-hit parts are the Kuala Baram, Permyjaya and ILP Miri area. On Wednesday (August 14th) morning, ILP Miri reached a record high of 407! That is the highest recorded AQI since the haze started.
Miri’s haze is caused by the surge in forest and peat fires around Kuala Baram. It hasn’t rained for a while too. This creates dry conditions. Coupled with strong winds, the fires spread rampantly.
The authorities have their hands tied in trying to contain the fires. They lack the manpower needed to keep up with the vast spread of fires. Their biggest hope is for it to rain. Allowing continuous downpour that can help contain the fires.
The people are choking on Miri haze. Especially those who live in Kuala Baram and the Senadin area. These areas are in close vicinity to the fires. Health clinics have seen a surge in illnesses linked to bad air quality.
We extend well wishes to those directly affected by the Miri haze situation. If you live near the affected areas, stay safe! Here are a few things you should do to stay healthy and safe in the Miri haze. And, minimize the effects of Miri haze on your health
Drink Lots of Water
It is important to stay hydrated. Temperatures are reaching highs with the lack of rain. Keeping hydrated can boost the immune system. And, avoid contraction of respiratory illnesses. Try to drink at least 2 liters of water a day.
Refrain from any outdoor activity at this time. Being outdoors will leave you vulnerable to Miri haze. The airborne particles are hazardous to your health. Inhaling the particles can cause difficulty in breathing and respiratory infections. Your throat, eyes, and skin will experience irritation too.
So, stay indoors with the air conditioning on. Remember to regularly clean your air conditioner filter too.
Wear a Respirator/ Dust Mask When Outdoors
However, if you really can’t avoid going outdoors, wear a mask when out. The mask will prevent inhalation of airborne particles from the Miri haze. Be sure to change it regularly. This avoids bacterial growth. And, catching other infections.
Seek Medical Assistance
Everybody knows this time of year to be ‘musim demam’. The Miri haze situation makes it hard to recover from illnesses quickly. So, if ill, seek immediate professional help. This will avoid prolonged illness. And, catching other infections.
Stay Safe During Miri Haze
Hopefully, the Miri haze situation does not worsen. Rainfall is much welcome current situation. The government is urging people not to begin open burning in fear of lighting peat fires. As these fires are very difficult to put out.
Other parts of Sarawak are experiencing haze as well. Sri Aman recorded an unhealthy level air quality (101-200). Some places in West Malaysia are experiencing haze as well. Open burning in neighboring Indonesia is the cause of haze in other parts of our country.
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