Haze blankets Trans-Kalimantan highway

Haze blankets Trans-Kalimantan highway

10 August 2009

published by www.thejakartapost.com

Indonesia — Smoldering haze from bush and peat land fires in Central Kalimantan has covered the Trans-Kalimantan highway, Antara news agency reported.

“Over the past week, haze has disrupted traffic on the Trans-Kalimantan highway connecting Palangkaraya and Banjarmasin ,” Ahmat Baderi, a driver, said Monday.

The haze has reduced visibility and caused respiratory problems in the area, he added.

The Palangkaraya Health Agency reported that a total of 1,882 people had suffered from respiratory problems due to the haze in the first week of August. Local residents have been forced to wear masks because of the smoke.

Fires have become more frequent and widespread especially in Sumatra and Kalimantan due to human-induced changes in the forest ecosystem.

The fires have also sparked complaints about the export of the haze from neighboring Malaysia and Singapore.

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