CHIANGRAI TIMES – In Chiang Rai, the smog problem was also very serious, with the amount of small dust particles touching 431.6 micrograms per cubic metre of air.
Chiang Rai Governor Thanin Supasan said the provincial government was now securing the help of the Royal Thai Air Force in combating the smog.
“Two RTAF planes will be deployed to sprinkle water in the sky over Chiang Rai so as to ease the problem,” he said.
Water-sprinkling efforts are expected to help at least a little, as rainfall last week led to a significant fall in smog intensity in the North.
RTAF deputy chief-of-staff Air Marshal Thongchai Chalamket said the aircraft could each carry about 3,700 litres of water per flight, which was sufficient to cover an area of more than one rai.
“We can arrange about 12 flights per day,” he said, adding that such planes were normally used for extinguishing forest fires.
The smog has now hit most areas of the North. The Pollution Control Department said the level of small dust particles now ranged between 111 and 432.6 micrograms per cubic metre in the region.
Chiang Rai’s Mae Sai district was found blanketed by 441.6 micrograms/cubic metres (ug/m3) of fine particle dust for a second day in a row Tuesday, while six other provinces suffered from PM10 dust above the safety level of 120 ug/m3, the Pollution Control Department said Tuesday.
Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra expressed concerns over situation at the Cabinet meeting yesterday and instructed Interior, Agriculture and Science ministries to have a team visit the affected areas and launch a campaign to stop fires from being lit outdoors and implement harsher punishment for violators.