Mar 15 2012

North Thai haze update, March 15, 2012

Published by at 12:56 am under Haze in northern Thailand


The haze enveloping much of northern Thailand has largely dissipated with some Wednesday night storms clearing the air. Light showers in the Chiang Mai region on the night of the 11th to 12th was a good start to getting rid of the haze but quite fierce storms with high winds and heavier rain on the night of the 14th led to a substantial improvement in air quality. In fact, the high winds did actually cause some damage in certain areas — our office sign blew off the wall in Chiang Mai — but we reckon most people would consider that a small price to pay.

Fallen tree in Nimmanhemin

Fallen tree in Nimmanhemin.

Compare the photo below with that taken a week ago; okay the skies are still not crystal clear, and don’t expect them to be so until the rains start in earnest — usually towards the end of April/May — but it is a vast improvement. You can now walk around Chiang Mai city without getting a sore throat or red eyes and while we still advise some caution for further north and are aware that conditions can change pretty rapidly, at present the city and surrounding areas do not present any particular problems.

Not great but better than below taken 5 days ago

Not great, but better than the below, which was taken five days ago.

Before the rain

Before the rain.

Chiang Mai, Phayao, Phrae, Nan, Tak, Lampang, Lamphun and even Chiang Rai have all improved, though conditions in all parts of Mae Hong Son province, which hasn’t received any rain, remain at present critical.  Hopefully further forecast storms may hit the latter province soon and with luck (or government cloud-seeding efforts), some more showers will occur across the region.

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8 Responses to “North Thai haze update, March 15, 2012” ...

  1. Con 19 Mar 2012 at 5:01 am

    Update: 19th March
    Haze is back, Doi Suthep has disappeared.
    PM10 is over 200! (EU safety standard is 50)

  2. Markon 19 Mar 2012 at 5:36 am

    Yes back with a vengeance isn’t it!? Big fire up near Huay Tung Tao which is either army or national park land!

  3. Mikeon 21 Mar 2012 at 4:01 am

    Hello..we were planning to be in Chiang Mai on Sunday and Monday 25-26. Should we stay away from Chiang Mai? We will of course loose our money on the hotel, train tickets and flight from Chiang Mai to Phuket. Haze is one thing but reports of dangerous dust and people having eye and breathing problems does not sound all that great…?

  4. Markon 21 Mar 2012 at 5:00 am

    Difficult call I’m afraid Mike. Yes the smog/smoke is back with a vengeance but all it needs is a decent shower to clear the air. Storms have been forecast for the North over the next day or 2 but how reliable weather forecasts are…well!? At present it’s certainly not great for trekking, mountain views or long bike rides in the hills but is ok for pottering around the town. Sorry can’t be more helpful. Cheers.

  5. Mikeon 21 Mar 2012 at 3:27 pm

    @ Mark. Thanks for the info! I appreciate your response because trying to decipher the few news articles out there makes it difficult to decide. I did see the forecast for rain so, I will do a dance and pray to the rain gods for some precipitation! :-)

    Again, you have been very helpful, thanks!

  6. Mikeon 22 Mar 2012 at 5:20 am

    Thanks for the info Mark!

  7. neil renardon 29 Mar 2012 at 4:10 am

    i just saw low flying dakota type aircraft throw out large amount of powdwer over panthip plaza chang klan road(11;05am) what does this mean???

  8. Markon 29 Mar 2012 at 7:15 am

    Foiled drug smugglers trying to get rid of the evidence? (Or maybe just cloud seeding over Panthip? If so doesn’t
    seem to have done anything.) Cheers Neil.

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