Two helicopters from the Department of Public Disaster Prevention and Mitigation are being deployed today (Monday) to help firemen to control forest fires, which have been raging for four days in Ob Luang National Park in Chiang Mai.
Maj-Gen Weerawat Wiwatwanich, deputy director of the command centre set up to curb forest fires and particulate matter emissions, said today that the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the Department of Royal Rain-making and Agricultural Aviation have already deployed helicopters to fight the fires.
He said the efforts have, however, not been successful as the fires are still raging on high mountains, making it extremely difficult for firemen to access the areas, although about 400 troops are on standby to help in the effort.
Meanwhile, the Pollution Control Department (PCD) reported today that PM2.5 dust in the atmosphere in many areas of northern provinces have exceeded the standard safety level, ranging from 32-182 microns. In Chiang Mai Province, PM2.5 dust in some areas has reach 182 microns, with a thick haze covering Doi Suthep-Pui and Doi Lo mountains.
Northern provinces which are recording excessive PM2.5 today include Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Nan, Mae Hong Son, Phayao, Lamphun, Lampang, Phrae, Uttaradit, Sukhothai, Tak and Kamphaeng Phet.
In the north-east, the PCD reported excessive PM2.5 in Nong Khai, Nakhon Phanom, Khon Kaen and Ubon Ratchathani provinces.
For the rest of the country the air quality in general is good and within the safety standard.
Bangkok and its suburbs will enjoy good air quality until Friday, due to improved air circulation and strengthening southerly winds, according to the PCD.