Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, December 20
Residents of the city today shivered with cold as the maximum temperature dipped to 9 degree Celsius, 12 degree Celsius below the normal, the lowest in the month of December in the past 28 years. All 19 flights operating from Chandigarh were cancelled due to low visibility caused by dense fog while six long route trains arrived late.
According to the Met record, the maximum temperature in the city is lower than Shimla (16.6 degree Celsius) and Dharamshala (14.4 degree Celsius) today. The minimum temperature was recorded at 7 degree Celsius in the city today.
Records of the Met Department revealed that in 1986, which is the year since the department started keeping the weather record, the lowest maximum temperature recorded was 15 degree Celsius in Chandigarh. However, until today, the lowest maximum temperature in the month of December had been 9.4 degree Celsius recorded on December 30, 1990.
No flight landed or took off from the airport here. The situation will be reviewed on Sunday to take a final call on service operations, said JS Balhara, Airport Director. Passengers had a tough time making alternative arrangements. With visibility reduced to 600-800 metre, all airlines cancelled their services. For airline operations, a minimum visibility of 1,200 metre is required, the official said.
Six long route trains and the morning Shatabdi arrived late due to poor visibility. The railway authorities said the Chandigarh-Yesvantpur train got delayed by six hours, Howrah-Chandigarh by five hours, Luckhnow-Chandigarh by three and a half hours, Unchahar Express by 13 hours, Madaurai-Chandigarh by four and a half and hours and Lucknow-Chandigarh by four hours. The morning Shatabdi arrived three and a half hours late.
The forecast says the maximum temperature will be 10 degree Celsius and minimum 7 degree Celsius on Sunday.
Met Director Surinder Pal Singh said there would be dense fog and no sunlight for more than 48 hours and the maximum temperature would dip by seven or eight notches below the normal. He said continuing cold wave could trigger dense fog, reducing visibility to 50 metre.
The Met Director said usually, the maximum temperature recorded in December remained 15 or 16 degree Celsius. There will be no rain but dense fog will further dip the temperature, he added.
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