PASIR GUDANG: Schools and education centres with some 20,000 students and teachers within a 6km radius of Taman Mawar have been ordered closed until Thursday following the second case of air pollution to hit Pasir Gudang district.
The order issued by the Johor government affects all 16 primary and secondary schools here.
State Health, Culture and Heritage Committee chairman Mohd Khuzzan Abu Bakar said the order also covered state government-run religious schools, 69 kindergartens and preschools as well as Politeknik Ibrahim Sultan, which are all located within the affected area.
“These education institutions will be closed from Monday until Thursday as part of our precautionary measures to safeguard public safety.
“The decision was made following a meeting by the technical and scientific committee, which found that students in classrooms located on the third and fourth floors were at risk of being affected by the air pollution,” he told a press conference held at the Pasir Gudang Indoor Stadium yesterday.
Mohd Khuzzan added that the Department of Environment, together with other federal agencies, was working closely to locate the cause of the contamination which hit the area last Thursday.
“We have narrowed down the source but will give further details once we have confirmed it,” he said, declining to elaborate further.
The 16 schools are SK Bukit Dahlia, SK Taman Cahaya Masai, SK Felda Cahaya Baru, SK Kong Kong Laut, SK Taman Nusa Damai, SK Kopok, SK Kota Masai 3, SK Taman Cendana, SMK Taman Nusa Damai, SMK Pasir Gudang, SMK Kota Masai, SJK (T) Pasir Gudang, SK Taman Scientex, SMK Taman Scientex, SK Pasir Gudang 4 and SMK Pasir Gudang 2.
Two of the schools as well as three others run by the state government were ordered to close on Sunday and Monday.
They were SK Pasir Gudang 4 and SMK Pasir Gudang 2 as well as Sekolah Agama Taman Mawar, Tadika Pasti and Tadika Pintar Bistari.
On Thursday, about 15 students of Sekolah Agama Taman Mawar suffered breathing difficulties and vomiting.
Meanwhile, Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Sahruddin Jamal said the state government would be discussing with the Federal Department of Town and Country Planning about forming a committee to look into the Pasir Gudang issue.
“This committee will re-study the proximity of the residential and industrial areas in Pasir Gudang,” he said.