Shimla, January 29: Heavy snowfall has thrown life out gear in many parts of Himachal Pradesh since the past few weeks. Cold wave conditions continued to grip the hill state with the mercury below zero degrees at many places including tourist destinations like Shimla, Spiti and Manali. The weatherman has predicted more snow across the state in next 48 hours. In the wake of heavy snowfall and rain, an avalanche warning has been issued government in several districts of the state. Also, the District Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) Chamba has issued an advisory asking people to stay indoors and refrain from going to avalanche affected areas between January 30 to February 1. Avalanche Hits Khardung La in Ladakh.
According to MeT department, Lahaul and Spiti’s administrative centre Keylong continued to be the coldest place in the state with a low of -17° C while the minimum temperature in Kinnaur’s Kalpa was -7.6° C. On Monday, the minimum temperature in Manali was minus 5 degrees Celsius, Kufri recorded minus 4.2 degrees and Dalhousie froze at minus 4 degrees. The fresh snowfall led to traffic congestion on National-Highway 5 at Kufri.
According to reports, nearly 500 roads across the state were closed after the recent spell of snow. Over 300 machines and nearly 2000 people have been deputed to clear the roads in Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand. Himachal Pradesh: Snowfall in Major Tourist Places, Minimum Temperature Dips Below Freezing Point.
In the wake of the Western Disturbance, the Meteorological Department has predicted heavy snowfall and rain in Kullu, Shimla, Kinnaur, Lahaul and Spiti, Chamba, Kinnaur, Kullu, Kangra, Sirmaur and Mandi districts from Wednesday.
Shimla weather centre director Manmohan Singh was quoted in reports saying that a fresh western disturbance is very likely to affect the western Himalayas and adjoining plains from January 29 and it would lead to fairly widespread rain and snowfall in the state from January 30 to February 1. Himachal Pradesh Sees Temperature Fall Below Freezing Point.
On January 22, Shimla, known as the 'Queen of the Hills', recorded the highest snowfall on a single day in January in the past 15 years. A Met official said the town recorded 44.5 cm of snowfall on January 22, the highest in the first month of the year since 2004. "The maximum snow in 24 hours in January was previously recorded in 2004. It was 57.7 cm on January 23," the MeT said.