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The haze situation in urban Chiang Mai had improved by Friday morning but remained hazardous enough in some areas that vulnerable groups – small children, the elderly and the infirm – were still being advised to wear facemasks while outdoors.
Downtown Chiang Mai had a PM2.5 level – particulates 2.5 microns or less in diameter – of 38 micrograms per cubic metre of air, down from 43.88 on Thursday.
There was a slew of cropland-clearing fires this week ahead of an announced ban on outdoor burning throughout March and April, necessitating immediate measures to discourage the practice.
The Pollution Control Department (PCD) put PM2.5 levels in the North between 35 and 63mcg, the upper figure recorded in the tambons of Mae Mo in Lampang’s Mae Mo district and Ban Klang in Muang Lamphun.
Bangkok and five neighbouring provinces were below the safe limit of 50mcg, the PCD said, and the situation was expected to improve further on Saturday thanks to measures taken by state agencies.
In the Northeast, PM2.5 ranged from 49-67mcg, with tambon Nai Muang in Muang Khon Kaen worst off.