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Singapore - Environmental Emergencies

Air Pollution
Air quality in Singapore is generally very good. There are very high standards for control of industrial and traffic pollution. Singapore however cannot control pollution levels in neighbouring countries, which due to close proximity can affect Singapore also. Forest fires in Indonesia often cause periods throughout the year when ‘the haze’ is a problem. At these times people with asthma, allergies etc. should try to stay indoors. The excellent National Environment Authority website has more information and gives a daily PSI (pollutants standards index) reading.

  • National Environment Authority
    Call centre Hotline 1800 2255 632
    Fax: + 65  6235 2611
    Dial-a weather Hotline: + 65 6542 7788
    Weather Fax-on-demand: + 65 6542 7789
    Email: [email protected]

Dengue Fever
Singapore is free of malaria but dengue fever, another mosquito born disease, does occur here. Dengue fever is transmitted by mosquitoes which bite during the daytime. This is a viral disease with flu-like symptoms that include fever, sore throat, aching in the muscles and joints, an orbital headache (one behind the eyes), nausea, vomiting, and a rash. The illness may last up to 10 days, but complete recovery can take two to four weeks. Dengue hemorrhagic fever is a relatively rare complication of dengue fever and is a severe illness that requires hospitalization.

The Ministry of the Environment has a control program for this mosquito but outbreaks of dengue fever still occur and are often traced to construction sites. Don’t leave water to collect in containers like pot plants where mosquitoes could lay eggs. Use mosquito repellant if you are taking part in outdoor activities away from built up areas.

SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome)

Along with China, Taiwan and Canada, Singapore has had a large number of SARS cases and many deaths. The Singapore government responded quickly to this public health threat and the situation is now under control with no new cases.
Singapore has a high standard of public health and environmental hygiene. The SARS epidemic has encouraged the government to continually improve the cleanliness of public places. They have started a ‘Singapore’s O.K.’ campaign which designates shops, restaurants etc. that have passed new, tougher public health inspections.

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Being near the equator, Singapore basically has the same season all-year round. Short, sharp bursts of heavy rain accompanied by a thunderstorm and lightning, occur about every second day. When the rainfall is particularly heavy or prolonged, there may be some minor local flooding but this is rare.

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