Since the Indonesian President added pressure to control the fire in the Riau forests, coupled by regular rain in Singapore, air quality in Singapore has started to revert to good level, or moderate on bad days. While we hope the haze will permanently stay at bay, the National Environment Agency (NEA) is still encouraging the public to take extra precautions and to be prepared for the haze to return.
According to SingHealth website, inhaling excessive haze particles can increase the risks of developing viral and bacterial infections, heart and lung diseases, cancer and even stroke.
Associate Professor Loo Chian Min, Head and Senior Consultant of Respiratory & Critical Care Medicine at Singapore General Hospital commented that “even healthy people can suffer from irritation in the eyes, nose and throat, coughing and sneezing, if they spend time outdoors during a smoke haze.”
For precaution measures, NEA has advised to minimise outdoor activities when PSI level goes high especially those who are more vulnerable to the haze such as the elderlies, young children, pregnant ladies and those who have chronic respiratory illnesses.
While spending more time indoors, below are some suggestions how you can protect your Home when the PSI is high.
- Keep all windows closed as long as possible, until the haze condition improves.
- Turning on the air-conditioner in your home not only help to blow in cool air into the house, the AC also helps to filter the air pollutants.
- Clean the air filter in the AC twice a week by taking it out to wash under running water. Get the professionals to thoroughly clean the AC when the hazy days are over.
- Use a good quality air ionizer or air purifier to eliminate pollutants in the air.
- Minimise drying your clothes in the open air as particles from the haze will settle onto your laundry. If you dry your clothes outside during hazy days, then you may find burnt smell lingering on your dried laundry.
- Vacuum floor at least twice a day using a vacuum cleaner that comes with good HEPA filter.
- Vacuum your fabric soft furnishings like mattress, rug/carpet and sofa daily. These soft furnishings can trap air particles easily.
- Keep soft toys in closed compartments.
- Professionally clean your soft furnishings after the haze is over to thoroughly remove the air particles and bacteria. Although windows are mostly kept closed, air pollutants can still enter our home from thin gaps and settle into the fabric furnishings. You might even burnt smell lingering on your sofa or curtain if they are placed near the windows.