Health Protection Agency (HPA) has urged Maldivians and those residing in the country to take precautionary measures due to the impact of air pollution from the Himalayan region of North India affecting Maldives.
According to the Maldives Meteorology Office (MET), there has been an increase in haze or blurriness in the air in different parts of the country due to the shift of wind from the west to the east, causing dust and factory waste crossing the Bay of Bengal and reaching Maldives.
As a result, far-sightedness has been significantly reduced in the north and central parts of the country, and people are advised to be cautious as the unclean air may lead to various health issues.
HPA said the environment ministry's IQAir visual app can be used to monitor air quality. People are advised to wear masks while stepping out.
The risk of air pollution is high in infants, children and the elderly, pregnant women, people with underlying lung disease, heart disease and other allergies.
0-50: Good quality air, little to no danger to health
51-100: symptoms in breathing may occur, people with critical health conditions are advised to not go out
101-150: breathing difficulties may occur among the general public and especially people with critical health conditions
151-200: In general, everyone is at high risk of adverse heart and lung injury and disease
201-300: The air quality will impact everyone. People with health conditions should stop spending time outside.
With the decrease in air quality, people with respiratory diseases and allergies, children, and pregnant women are advised to not spend large amounts of time outdoors, and to wear masks when outside. Outdoor activities should be reduced as well.