Government advises people to reduce outdoor activities as HK’s air pollution reaches ‘serious’ level under impact of Super Typhoon Lekima

09-Aug-2019 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 6:02 AM Print This Post

Air pollution reached a “serious” level in parts of Hong Kong on Thursday under the influence of a super typhoon, prompting the government to issue a public health warning.

A statement by the Environmental Protection Department advised residents, particularly young children and the elderly, to reduce or avoid outdoor activities as pollutant levels had increased gradually since Thursday morning.

“Under the influence of [Super Typhoon] Lekima, the weather in Hong Kong is fine and very hot but [the skies are] hazy,” the statement said.

“Higher than normal levels of ozone and particulates have been recorded since noon.”

As of 3pm on Thursday, two of Hong Kong’s 16 air-quality monitoring stations in Yuen Long and Tuen Mun reported the health risk from pollution as “serious”, the highest level on a five-point scale.

Thirteen other stations recorded “very high” levels, while only Tseung Kwan O remained on “high” level. Tsuen Wan, Tung Chung and Tap Mun have hit an air quality health index of 10, while Central and Western district recorded a 9.

Pollution levels may remain high on Friday as well.

High levels of ozone led to formation of nitrogen dioxide, increasing the chances of breathing problems, particularly in urban areas and by the roadside, the department said.

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It also said employers of workers in outdoor heavy manual labour should assess health risks for their employees and adopt preventive measures.

The Hong Kong Observatory said showers on the coast of Guangdong by next week were expected to ease the city’s pollution levels.


Category: Hong Kong

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