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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Mercury plummets to subzero on HP highs


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Shimla: Mercury dipped to subzero levels at many places in tribal districts of Himachal Pradesh on Wednesday as minimum temperatures were three to four degrees below normal.

High altitude glacial and snow-lakes froze as mercury plummeted several degrees below normal, respective district administration imposed embargo on travel or activities near such water bodies, a notification issued late night here said.

The notification issued by Deputy Commissioner Lahaul-Spiti Sumit Khimta said that on the recommendation of ADC, Spiti at Kaza he decided to close Sumdo Kaza Gramphoo Road from Lossar to Gramphoo and Chandertal Lake for the winters due to heavy snowfall in high altitudes and slippery road conditions.

Khimta said the embargo was imposed from past experiences as many traveler have been stranded on the roads and high altitude snow-lakes due to unprecedented snowfall at Kunzum top.

He said the administration could not afford travellers or tourist risking their lives as rescue operations become very challenging under extremely hostile weather conditions at such remote places.

It invoked Section 34 of the Disaster Management Act 2005 on NH – 505 ( Sumdo – Kaza – Gramphoo Road) to close it from Lossar to Gramphoo and vice versa, including Chandertal Lake for movement of all type of vehicles till further orders.

Any violation of the order could lead to imprisonment of up to 1 year or fine, or both.

Suraj and Chander Tal of Lahual Spiti are among those lakes which attract steady visitors throughout summer and rainy season.

But now they are frozen as are other waterbodies including small rivluts.

The MeT office said Keylong district headquarter of Lahaul-Spiti was at minus 6.9 degrees Celsius (down 5.9 degrees from normal),Kukumseri (minus 6.5), and Kalpa in Kinnuar (minus 0.5).

Tourist spots Manali was at 2 degrees Celsius, Kufri (3.8); Shimla (5.7); Solan (5), Mandi (6.7), Chamba (6), Dharamshala (8.4), Kangra (9.5), Dalhousie (6.8) and Una 9.6 degrees Celsius.

The MeT recorded one mm rain at Narkanda and 0.6 mm at Kufri.

Fog affected Bilaspur and Sundernagar(Mandi).

While snowfall is forecast at a few places in the higher reaches and isolated places across state over the next 24 hours till Thursday.

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