Mumbai: A haze has been hanging over the city for the past few days, caused by very poor air quality, and it is expected to hang around for a while. “For the next three days, the air quality of Mumbai is likely to be very poor due to the sudden change in temperatures,” said an official from the System of Air Quality Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR). Pollution levels in Mumbai had soared earlier in the day, with air quality plummeting to ‘poor’, with the air quality index (AQI) at 271. Officials from the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) said the haze was a result of the moisture acting on the dry northerly winds, as well as pollution. “The high levels of particulate matter (PM) in the air and a combination of the dry winds have been resulting in hazy conditions,” said the IMD official.
The Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC) had the worst air quality in the city on Friday, with an AQI of 371, followed by Andheri (369), Malad (325) and Mazgaon (291). All these places recorded ‘very poor’ air quality. The Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) says the safe limit for particulate matter (PM) 2.5 is 60 µg/m3 for 24 hours. “When there is a sudden change in temperatures, the body fails to adjust and becomes vulnerable to infection. People should be cautious and carry warm clothes while travelling outside, especially in the early morning and night,” said Dr Rajendra Patil, a general physician.