The first hazy days in Singapore

It’s been a week since I landed on the little red dot. I spent the first two days trying to hunt down my luggage because an elusive Mr. Chen took home my blue suitcase mistaking it for his. After I got my bag full of shorts and T-shirts back, I got excited to enjoy the Singaporean sunshine.

Singapore hazeBut, the sun has been struggling to shine its light on me and the other 5ish million Singaporeans because the city is enveloped in a thick cloud of haze. Winds are blowing the uncontrolled fires from the “slash and burn” cultivation of Sumatra onto Singapore. Take a look at these amazing NASA images that capture the fumes blowing from Indonesia to Singapore.

Singaporeans are no strangers to the haze from their neighbours drifting over their city, but it has never been this bad. The highest Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) record was set in 1997 with a value of 226. To contextualize the situation, a PSI of 300 is considered hazardous; 400 is considered lethal for the elderly and ill. Today, the PSI soared up to 402. Continue reading