The Ministry of Education announced that due to high levels of air pollution that they are closing schools in Bangkok and surrounding provinces. Private schools are not required to close but are recommended to do so for the health of their students. According to the Department of Pollution Control the air quality numbers have fallen to harmful levels exceeding safe levels. The dust particles are known as PM2.5 which are small particles that can lodge in the lungs and then can be passed onto other organs of the human body. According to the World Health Organization the Air Quality Index that is below 2.5 is considered to be acceptable for humans to be able to breathe.
In order to keep the dust levels down they are going to use drones to drop water to hopefully control the dust from contaminating the air. Some of the citizens don’t believe that this will help with this air pollution problem. They believe that the government should cut down on the number of vehicles that are allowed on the roadways and that focus should be on industrial pollution that is put out by factories. Some of the air pollution comes from plantations burning their crops after harvest and from mining operations.
The Thai Officials are meeting to come up with solutions to the air pollution problem. They met with more than 100 construction operators and academic, engineering, and pollutions experts to discuss possible solutions. One of the ideas on the table is to send over 172 aircraft over Bangkok to spray water on the dust areas. They have also started spraying water from fire engines over the city streets to help keep the dust down.
Some parents believe that they should have left the children in the schools to keep them safe because now the parents have to take time off of work to care for their children. Most of the schools lack air conditioning and some are open air schools so that was not an option.
Bangkok is worried that this problem may affect their tourism and are struggling. Their tourism numbers fell when they had a deadly boat accident off the waters of the resort island of Phuket.