Haze hits Jakarta but air quality still 'normal'

Haze situation in Jakarta, Indonesia on Oct 27, 2015.
Haze situation in Jakarta, Indonesia on Oct 27, 2015.ST PHOTO: FRANCIS CHAN

Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama yesterday confirmed that haze from forest fires in Sumatra and Kalimantan has hit Indonesia's capital on Java island.

Smoke from the fires had been lingering over the Sunda Strait, which separates Java and Sumatra, since last Saturday.

Mr Basuki, however, added that the air quality was still in the "normal range".

"Hopefully the winds will push it away. Let us pray," he said.

His comments come after the spokesman for Indonesia's national disaster management agency (BNPB), Dr Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, shared on Twitter a satellite image taken at 8.30am yesterday which showed smoke over West Java.

"Thin smoke mixed with moisture and pollutants enveloped the skies of Jakarta," Dr Sutopo tweeted yesterday afternoon.

The police in Jakarta have started working with the BNPB and Indonesia's meteorology, climatology and geophysics agency.

This was to establish the potential impact on the city should air quality be affected by the haze, said Jakarta's police chief, Inspector-General Tito Karnavian.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 27, 2015, with the headline 'Haze hits Jakarta but air quality still 'normal''. Print Edition | Subscribe