Asthma patients suffer under haze

  • Nation
  • Monday, 19 Oct 2015

Ghostly skyline: Tourists taking pictures with the KLCC blanketed by thick haze in the background.

PETALING JAYA: The haze has worsened in the west coast of the peninsula, Sarawak and Sabah, forcing asthma patients and those with respiratory ailments to pay more visits to the doctor for treatment.

After several days of clear weather, the air quality in the Klang Valley, Malacca, Negri Sembilan as well as parts of Sarawak and Sabah fell to unhealthy levels yesterday due to shifting winds, which brought more smoke from land and forest fires in Sumatra and Kali­mantan, Indonesia.

An asthma patient, who only wished to be known as Noor Azah, 52, said she had to go to the hospital to get a nebuliser treatment when the haze worsened yesterday.

“I have been wearing a face mask every day for more than month as a safety precaution. But, every time the haze gets bad, I become very worried,” she said when met at a private hospital here.

A doctor, who runs a private clinic in Batu Caves, said she has seen more patients coming in complaining of coughs and other respiratory problems since the haze emerged. Most of them were young officeworkers.

“The haze is partly a factor causing their health problems,” said the doctor who declined to be named.

As of 5pm yesterday, 15 areas recorded unhealthy air quality, with the highest Air Pollutant Index reading recorded in Tawau at 130.

A reading of 100 to 200 indicates unhealthy air quality, 201 to 300 is very unhealthy, and above 300 is hazardous.

Other areas with unhealthy readings at 5pm were Banting (122), Ma­­­­lacca City (121), Batu Muda in Kuala Lumpur (118), Seremban (118), Nilai (117), Bukit Rambai (114), Putrajaya (112), Petaling Jaya (109), Port Dickson (109), Port Klang (115), Samarahan (110), Shah Alam (110), Cheras (103), and Kuching (100).

The haze has cut visibility at Sa­­bah’s Tawau airport, causing flight cancellations which left several hundred passengers stranded.

An airport spokesman said two flights – Malaysia Airlines Flight MH2121 from Kota Kinabalu, and the return flight MH2122 – were cancelled yesterday morning.

An AirAsia AK5748 flight from Kuala Lum­­­pur to Tawau that was supposed to land at 3.15pm, was diverted to Kota Kinabalu.

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Health , haze asthma


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