All schools in the Klang district have been ordered to close today after Port Klang reached a very hazardous level in the Air Pollution Index (API) reading.
Since midnight Friday, Banting has recorded API readings of beyond 300, peaking at 322 at 4am. It recorded an API reading of 316 as of 7am. Levels in Port Klang were equally high, peaking at 352 as of 7am.
Selangor Education Director, Datuk Mahmud Karim issued this directive and said, “The schools will be closed on Friday and will be reopen depending on the API readings.”
Selangor exco in charge of environment, Elizabeth Wong, said the state government would start distributing the first batch of 180,000 single-use face masks on Friday.
These face masks would be available at all state assemblyman’s offices.
“Since January this year, the Fire and Rescue Services Department (JBPM) has been working round-the-clock to put out fires with the help of the local councils and district offices.
“However, they are overwhelmed by an unprecedented number of cases. As such, I urge local residents and volunteer organisations to also help in putting out the small fires in their neighbourhoods,” she said.
Wong said the haze was caused by a combination of transboundary and local sources.
“Multiple agencies in Selangor including local councils, district offices and forestry departments are assisting JBPM to put out the fires,” she said, adding that the ban on open burning remains.
She said the state environment department had initiated 12 investigation papers, with the intention of prosecuting culprits involved in open burning on private lots.
An API of between 51 to 100 is considered moderate, 101-200 unhealthy, 201-300 very unhealthy and 301 and above hazardous.
Another 13 areas recorded unhealthy API readings as of 7am today. These are Muar (111), Malacca city (115), Bukit Rambai (134), Nilai (165), Port Dickson (168), Seremban (155), Tanjung Malim (107), Kuala Selangor (152), Petaling Jaya (186), Shah Alam (165), Batu Muda (176), Cheras (147) and Putrajaya (176).