Air quality in Peninsular Malaysia continued to worsen on Wednesday (September 18) but improved significantly due to cloud seeding operations, while the haze condition in Sarawak is still very hazardous due to winds gushing in ash and smoke from deforestation of trees and farmland in Indonesia.
According to the Department of Environment, API readings of 50 and below indicate “good” air quality, “moderate” to 51-100 and “unhealthy” to 101-200. The Environment Department has put in place an action plan to mitigate and manage the impact of haze on the public to address the haze situation in Malaysia. The Government’s plans, comprised of 8 government agencies and led by the Department of the Environment, allow for tiered responses, depending on the haze situation, based on the 24-hour Air Pollutant Index (API)
Pre-Schools and Schools
Pre-school operators have been required to monitor the air quality levels and comply with healthy advisories by the Ministry of Education(MOE). At the present moment, all outdoor activities have been suspended. A total of 1,658 schools in Selangor, Penang, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya have been closed for two days starting today and tomorrow due to the worsening haze that has affected more than one million students.
The Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) also reminded employers to follow their guidance and tripartite advice. MTUC advised employers to take the necessary measures to prepare their companies and employees to minimize or mitigate the effects of haze. If the API reaches 500 and above, a state of haze emergency will be declared according to the National Disaster Management Agency(NADMA). In effect, all government and private sectors to be closed pending declaration of Disaster Emergency by the National Committee on Disaster Management except for essential services. General measures at the workplace include:
- Minimise outdoor activities
- Close all windows, doors and any openings that may allow haze to enter the workplace
- Ensure maintenance of air conditioner with regular cleaning and servicing
- Use an air purifier to keep the particulate levels low
- Provide health education regarding haze to the employees
- Provide respirators for employees who have to work outdoors
- Conduct Fit Testing for employees who need to use respirators
- Reassignment of job tasks
- Motorists have also been advised by the Ministry of Transport Malaysia to drive with care and switch on headlights when visibility is low.
- Outdoor and indoor facilities may remain open to the public, but are advised to take necessary precautions to ensure personal safety.
- An order has been issued by the Department of Environment(DOE) to all landowners in the peat soil areas of Kuala Baram,Sarawak to prevent and control fires
What are your thoughts on our government’s current initiative to combat the haze? Leave us your thoughts on the comment sections below. Follow us for more daily career insights and new hirings to land your dream job. Head over to Jobstore.com and unveil your next job opportunity.
You Jing is a content writer who writes career and lifestyle contents to inspire job seekers and employers alike on their journey to work-life balance, empowerment and transformation in their career path.
Reach me at email@example.com