PETALING JAYA: The haze in which Malaysia has been engulfed for several weeks now hit a new peak in Sri Aman, Sarawak, which recorded a hazardous air pollutant index (API) reading of 367 as of 9am today.
This makes it the first area to have reached a hazardous level since the haze appeared in Malaysia early this month.
An API reading of 0-50 shows good air quality; 51-100, moderate; 101-200, unhealthy; 201-300, very unhealthy and over 300, hazardous.
Air pollution in Kuching remains at a very unhealthy level of 220 while other parts of Sarawak are categorised as unhealthy.
In the peninsula, Johan Setia in Klang maintained its very unhealthy status with an API level of 233.
The tourist district of Port Dickson, which saw classes at all 63 of its schools suspended this morning, also recorded a very unhealthy API reading of 202 as of 9am.
The API in Nilai also breached the 200 mark while Melaka, Selangor and Kuala Lumpur remain at unhealthy levels.
Over 100 schools in Sepang, Hulu Langat, Klang and Petaling Perdana were closed today, affecting nearly 188,000 students in the areas.
Last week, environment minister Yeo Bee Yin said Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad would write to Indonesian President Joko Widodo to raise concerns about cross-border haze.
Forest fires have become an almost annual occurrence in Indonesia, especially in dry years, and Indonesia’s neighbours have complained of the thick, choking haze wafting in, raising concern about health and the impact on tourism.