Delhi's air quality turned severe today due to adverse meteorological conditions that remained unfavorable for dispersion of pollutants.
According to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) data, the overall air quality index (AQI) in the city reached 420 that falls in the severe category.
23 areas in Delhi recorded severe air quality, while six areas recorded very poor air quality, it said.
PM2.5 level reached 291 while PM10 stood at 465
Ghaziabad, Faridabad, Gurgaon, and Noida recorded severe air quality, according to the data.
The overall PM2.5 level was recorded at 291, and the PM10 level at 465 in Delhi, the CPCB said.
An AQI between 100 to 200 comes under the moderate category, 201 and 300 is considered poor, 301 and 400 very poor, while that between 401 and 500 is severe.
Authorities advise all to avoid outdoor activities, including taking walks
The wind speed is likely to remain "highly unfavorable" for dispersion of pollutants today, the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IIMT) said.
According to experts, even healthy people find it hard to breathe when air quality level is at 'severe' level.
Doctors advised physical activity to be kept at a minimum, while SAFAR advised people to avoid all outdoor activities, including taking walks.
Close windows, avoid burning wood, candle or incense, advises SAFAR
In a health advisory, the Center-run System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting (SAFAR) asked Delhiites not to rely on common dust masks for protection.
"If the room has windows, close them, if the air conditioner provides a fresh air intake option then choose it, avoid burning anything such as wood, candle or even an incense," it said.
Buy masks known as N-95, P-100 respirators for outdoor activities
The SAFAR has also recommended frequent wet mopping and using masks known as N-95 or P-100 respirators only for outdoor activities. "Do not rely on common dust masks for protection," the advisory added. The air quality in Delhi was in severe category yesterday as well.