LAHORE, Jan 8: Temperatures dipped on Tuesday to their record 50-year low (below freezing point) in various cities in Punjab and elsewhere in the country due to persistent fog and cold wind from Europe.
The minimum temperature in Lahore dropped to freezing point (zero degree Celsius) on Monday night. The daytime maximum temperature increased from Monday’s 8 degrees Celsius to 11.3 degrees Celsius as fog cleared in the afternoon allowing the sun to somewhat shine on the cold-battered city.
Nevertheless, the surface cooling accumulated due to the past over one week’s thick fog cover marginalised the brief sunshine. People shivered even while seeking little bit warmth from the pale sun.
According to the Met office, the day temperatures have been 10 to 12 degrees Celsius lower than their normal value of the month in view of the persistent fog and cold wave. The normal day temperature in the plain areas of Punjab is 22 degrees Celsius and it has dropped to an average 10 degrees Celsius. Such lowest temperatures have been observed in the plain areas of Punjab after 50 years.
Cold wind coming from Europe through Iran and Afghanistan is continuously penetrating Pakistan. The wind, high humidity and delay in winter rainfall are the reasons for the prevailing dense and prolonged fog.
It said the weather conditions were likely to improve after expected rain over upper parts of the country during the weekend.
Meanwhile, the minimum temperature in Faisalabad, Toba Tek Singh and Sahiwal was -2 degrees Celsius as it was in Murree. Their maximum temperature was 14, 12.2 and 10.2 degrees Celsius.
Thick fog again enveloped almost all the Punjab cities and Peshawar. Motorway was closed because of poor visibility from Lahore to Islamabad and from Pindi Bhattian to Faisalabad
during the early hours of the day.
The minimum temperature over the hills too dropped in view of the recent scattered snowfall. It was -17 degrees Celsius in Skardu, -15 in Astore and -12 in Hunza. -— Intikhab Hanif