Protection from dirty air readied for F1 fans

Sports | REUTERS 20 Sep 2019

Singapore Grand Prix organizers have stocked up on disposable face masks that could be sold to spectators as the worst air pollution in three years threatens to taint the event.

Organizers will be keeping close tabs on air pollution readings as three days of street-circuit racing, capped by the Formula 1 event on Sunday, start today. That is after authorities warned haze levels could worsen and advised people to reduce outdoor activity.

Singapore and large parts of Malaysia have been blanketed in recent days by smoke from Indonesia, where blazes are often started to clear land for plantations.

Disposable masks will be available for sale at merchandise booths if the pollution hits certain predetermined levels, organizers said. They will also be available to the elderly, children and pregnant women at first aid booths. "The haze situation is highly changeable not only from day to day but from hour to hour," a GP spokeswoman said.

Air pollution readings and health advisories are available online and will be broadcast.

Singapore has a stockpile of 16 million disposable masks and has been supplementing supplies among retailers in recent days.

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