Thick haze showcases worsening Hanoi air pollution

By Vo Hai, Giang Huy, Tat Dinh   December 14, 2019 | 05:15 pm GMT+7

Air quality in Hanoi continued to remain at very unhealthy levels Saturday, exemplified by a thick haze that blanketed the capital city.

Vehicles turn on their headlight while traveling on Thang Long Highway at 7:30 a.m. as vision is limited by the haze.At 8 a.m. the capitals Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded above 200 at eight out of 11 air monitoring stations scattered throughout the city. The level was considered ‘very unhealthy’ that experts advise children, seniors and individuals with heart or lung diseases to stay indoors and avoid outdoor activities.This was the fifth day in a row the capitals air quality had risen to above 200, sparking public concerns over health issues. 

The haze affected visibility so badly that vehicles on the Thang Long Highway had to turn on their headlights at 7:30 a.m.

At 8 a.m. the capital's Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded at above 200 in eight of 11 air monitoring stations in different parts of the city. The level means children, seniors and individuals with heart or lung problems should stay indoors.

Saturday is the fifth day in a row that the capital's air quality has stayed well above 200, sparking public concerns over its health implications.

High-rise buildings in Hanoi wear a hazy look.Monitoring results of the meteorological agency show that many areas have limited visibility. In Ha Dong District, vision is less than 100m and Ha Nam area is less than 200m.

High-rise buildings in Hanoi could be barely seen through the haze on Saturday morning.

Visibility remained low in many areas of the capital. In Ha Dong District of Hanoi, vision was less than 100 m, and it was 200 in Ha Nam Province, 60 km south of Hanoi.

The AQI recorded at air monitoring stations revealed air pollution in Hanoi start from 10 p.m. the previous day with indexes staying at 150 and climb to above 200 during the peak hour of morning (8 a.m.)IQAir AirVisual, a Switzerland-based air quality monitoring facility that generates data from public, ground-based and real-time monitoring stations, recorded Hanois AQI level at 271 on Saturday morning, making it the most polluted city in the world.Independent air quality analysis system PamAir recorded the air quality index of staying above 200 at 40 monitoring stations throughout the city.

IQAir AirVisual, a Switzerland-based air quality monitoring facility that generates data from public, ground-based and real-time monitoring stations, recorded Hanoi's AQI level at 271 on Saturday morning, making it the most polluted city in the world.

Independent air quality analysis system PamAir recorded the air quality index of staying above 200 at 40 monitoring stations throughout the city.

A woman wears a mask while walking at the Hoan Kiem (Sword) Lake area.

A woman wears a mask while walking by the Hoan Kiem (Sword) Lake in downtown Hanoi.

For motorbike drivers, protective masks are a must while driving on the street. Drivers are seen waiting at a red light at the corner of Minh Khai and Hai Ba Trung Street.Health experts urged the public, especially children, older people, pregnant women, and people with respiratory problems, to limit outdoor activities and people should wear masks and eyeglasses to reduce the exposure to pollutants. 

Many motorbike drivers wear protective masks, as seen at a red light at the corner of Nguyen Thi Minh Khai and Hai Ba Trung streets.

Health experts have urged the public, especially children, older people, pregnant women, and people with respiratory problems, to limit outdoor activities. People have also been advised to wear masks and eyeglasses to reduce exposure to pollutants.

Worsening air pollution forces many foreign tourists to wear masks to protect their health while taking cyclo rides in the capital.  The Vietnam Environment Administration said that Hanoi and other parts of the north region are in the dry season and a period of seasonal transition when air pollution is usually at its highest level of the year.

Visitors to the capital city wear masks as they take a cyclo drive near the Hanoi Opera House. 

The Vietnam Environment Administration has said that Hanoi and other parts of the northern region are in the dry season and a period of seasonal transition when air pollution is usually at its highest level of the year.

The iconic Long Bien Bridge was shrouded in haze this morning.Mai Van Khiem, director of the National Center for Hydrometeorological Forecasting said that thick haze happened not only in Hanoi on Saturday morning but also in almost all coastal provinces, the northern delta region and central provinces such as Thanh Hoa and Nghe An. He  cold air weakens and moves into the sea and the east-southeast wind brings moisture into the mainland, causing this phenomenon. 

The capital city’s Long Bien Bridge on Saturday morning.

Mai Van Khiem, director of the National Center for Hydrometeorological Forecasting, said that the thick haze was not only in Hanoi on Saturday morning but also in almost all coastal provinces, the northern delta region and central provinces such as Thanh Hoa and Nghe An. He said a cold front weakening and moving to the sea and the east-southeast wind were bringing moisture into the mainland, causing this phenomenon.

A video shows Hanoi shrouded in thick haze in the morning of December 14, 2019.

 
 
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