Air qual­ity ‘poor’ on Di­wali day, Bhandup the most pol­luted

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - Badri Chat­ter­jee badri.chat­ter­jee@hin­dus­tan­times.com

MUM­BAI: Eight out of 10 lo­ca­tions in Mum­bai recorded ‘poor’ air qual­ity lev­els at 5pm on Wed­nes­day, even be­fore Mum­bai­ites got to burst fire­crack­ers on Di­wali evening.

Mum­bai recorded an air-qual­ity in­dex of 225 for par­tic­u­late mat­ter (PM2.5), ac­cord­ing to the Sys­tem of Air Qual­ity and Weather Fore­cast­ing and Re­search (SAFAR), pos­ing a health risk to peo­ple sen­si­tive to air pol­lu­tion. Par­ti­cles less than 2.5 (PM2.5) mi­crons are more dan­ger­ous as th­ese can pen­e­trate deeper into the lungs and en­ter the blood­stream.

The in­dex is ex­pected to rise to 282 on Thurs­day as a re­sult of pol­lu­tants re­leased from fire­crack­ers.

The air-qual­ity in­dex has to be be­tween 0 and 50 for it to have min­i­mal im­pact on a per­son’s health, while 51 to 100 can cause mi­nor breath­ing dis­com­fort, any­thing be­yond 101 can cause breath­ing dis­com­fort de­pend­ing on how long a per­son is ex­posed to the pol­luted air.

On Wed­nes­day, the air in Bhandup was most pol­luted at 245 for PM2.5.

“Air pol­lu­tion lev­els are ex­pected to peak dur­ing the early hours of Thurs­day. With a drop in tem­per­a­tures, the ex­ist­ing pol­lu­tants, along with those from fire­crack­ers, will en­hance pol­lu­tion lev­els,” said Neha S Parkhi, se­nior pro­gramme of­fi­cer, SAFAR and In­dian In­sti­tute of Trop­i­cal Me­te­o­rol­ogy (IITM), Pune.

Parkhi said over the next two days, chil­dren, se­nior cit­i­zens and those sen­si­tive to pol­lu­tion should avoid spend­ing a lot of time out­doors.

CON­TIN­UED ON P6

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