Johor government probes Pasir Gudang air pollution claims (VIDEO)

An emergency services staff records details of students with reported breathing difficulties at Sekolah Agama Taman Mawar in Pasir Gudang June 20, 2019. — Bernama pic
An emergency services staff records details of students with reported breathing difficulties at Sekolah Agama Taman Mawar in Pasir Gudang June 20, 2019. — Bernama pic

JOHOR BARU, June 21 — Authorities will investigate if liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) fumes has made 15 students sick in Pasir Gudang, despite tests showing normal air quality, a state executive councillor said.

Johor Local Government, Urban Wellbeing and Environment Committee chairman Tan Chen Choon said the air quality is being monitored by the Johor Department of Environment (DoE) and the Fire and Rescue Department’s Hazardous Materials Team (Hazmat), with a frequency of every four hours in the school and affected areas within a two-kilometre radius starting last night.

He assured the public that a scientific committee has been set up to conduct an investigation and identify the source of the alleged pollution.

“The Hazmat, Emergency Medical Rescue Service (EMRS) and the Pasir Gudang Fire station together with the state DoE and other agencies had immediately carried out safety and decontamination work at the scene.

“This was done following initial information by the Pasir Gudang Municipal Council (MPPG) officials that the air pollution was said to be from LPG and the school had informed that the smell has been detected since the past three days,” said Tan in a statement last night.

Hazmat personnel from the Johor Baru Emergency Medical Rescue Service  (EMRS) are seen at Sekolah Agama Taman Mawar in Pasir Gudang June 20, 2019. — Bernama pic
Hazmat personnel from the Johor Baru Emergency Medical Rescue Service (EMRS) are seen at Sekolah Agama Taman Mawar in Pasir Gudang June 20, 2019. — Bernama pic

According to the initial air quality monitoring, Tan explained that parameter readings such as carbon monoxide (CO), hydrogen sulphide (H2S) and volatile organic compund (VOC) are zero.

“Oxygen readings at the scene are 21.2 ppm and this means air quality is normal and controlled.

“The Hazmat team also reported that no smell was detected at the scene until now,” he said.

Earlier today, the Fire and Rescue Department’s Pasir Gudang station was alerted about a suspected air pollution situation at Sekolah Agama Taman Mawar and Sekolah Kebangsaan Pasir Gudang 4 at 3.39pm, before rushing to the school to render assistance.

According to a Johor Fire and Rescue Department’s spokesman, the Emergency Medical Rescue Services (EMRS) personnel found about 15 students suffering breathing difficulties and vomiting.