Respite over: Temp climbs, air qual­ity drops to ‘poor’

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES CITY -

Mum­bai: Af­ter a slight re­lief, Mum­baikars were back to feel­ing the heat, with max­i­mum tem­per­a­tures inch­ing up­wards, while af­ter al­most the four months of mon­soon, air qual­ity lev­els dipped into the poor cat­e­gory on Satur­day.

In­dia Me­te­o­ro­log­i­cal Depart­ment (IMD) San­tacruz ob­ser­va­tory said the tem­per­a­ture touched 37°C on Satur­day; on Fri­day, it was 33-34°C.

Ghatkopar res­i­dent Pritesh Shah said the heat had be­come un­bear­able over the past few days. “It is dif­fi­cult to travel any­where in the city. I have been car­ry­ing my cap and wa­ter bot­tle each time I leave home,” he said.

IMD of­fi­cials said the drop in tem­per­a­ture last week was due to cy­clones Titli and Luban along the In­dian coast­line. The cy­clones caused a cloudy cover in the city and in­creased hu­mid­ity lev­els. “As the cy­clones have not moved away, tem­per­a­tures will rise again,” said a weather depart­ment of­fi­cial.

On Satur­day, the max­i­mum tem­per­a­ture recorded at IMD’s Co­laba ob­ser­va­tory too was 37°C, more than 4°C above nor­mal. The hu­mid­ity lev­els at Co­laba and San­tacruz were 70% and 62% re­spec­tively.

Ac­cord­ing to Sys­tem of Air Qual­ity Weather Fore­cast­ing and Re­search (SAFAR), the over­all air qual­ity in­dex of the city was 233. An AQI be­tween 201-300 is harm­ful for the health of sen­si­tive peo­ple.

Dur­ing the rain, air pol­lu­tants get washed away and air qual­ity re­mains un­der 100, which is con­sid­ered good. The AQI breached the 100-mark on Septem­ber 28 and has been be­tween 101-200 since.

Among 10 lo­ca­tions mon­i­tored by SAFAR, the high­est pol­lu­tion level of 331 was recorded at Navi Mum­bai. The clean­est air was recorded at Bhandup, with an AQI of 181.

Gufran Beig, project di­rec­tor, SAFAR said, “There is a lot of dust pick­ing up in Gu­jarat and it’s get­ting car­ried into Mum­bai. Ad­di­tion­ally, the winds are ex­tremely calm and hence the poor air qual­ity in spite of the high tem­per­a­ture. The con­di­tions will con­tinue for the next two days.”

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