SINGAPORE - Stores here are currently well-stocked with N95 face masks, but the Consumers Association of Singapore (Case) warns consumers to be careful about buying masks from unreliable sources as they may be of poor quality.
N95 masks of good quality are those certified by the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health to be at least 95 per cent effective at filtering fine particles. The most popular brands of such masks here are 3M, Kimberly-Clark and Paul-Boye.
From June 13 to 15, Case randomly sampled 57 authorised retailers and found that N95 masks are readily available.
It found that prices at authorised retailers currently range between $1.38 and $3.90, depending on the type of mask.
During the haze period last year, the price of such masks rose up to $8 each after people rushed to stock up on them.
Case cautioned that that the N95 face masks sold in Singapore are not designed to fit children and hence, parents should ensure that children reduce their participation in outdoor activities when air quality is unhealthy.