Kuching, Malaysia — Several parts of the state, including Kuching, were shrouded in fog early Monday, causing alarm among residents that the haze is back in view of the current dry spell.
However, the Sarawak Meteorological Services Department said the foggy condition, which reduced visibility to 800m in Kuching, 1.2km in Mulu and 3km in Sibu at 8am, was due to the high humidity brought about by the absence of rain.
“If the fog persists after 10 am, then it is a worrying factor because it can be related to the haze,” a spokesman told Bernama.
The duty forecaster said that by 10am today, visibility in all parts of the state had improved to more than 10km.
Except for isolated showers in Bintulu and Kapit, the weather was not expected to give any respite to Sarawakians in the next few days as the current dry season was anticipated to last until the end of August, he said.
In view of the prevailing south-westerly winds, the weather was expected to get drier with below-normal rain forecast for the next month from the mean rainfall of 210mm, he added.
He said that under prolonged dry conditions, for example during the strong El Nino years like in 1997, widespread haze due to trans-boundary pollution from forest fires in neighbouring countries could be a feature during the current season.
As such, he advised the public to wear sunshades or carry umbrellas in open areas for protection against the harmful ultraviolet rays.