Parts of Dal freeze; SEOC warns against walking on frozen water bodies
Precious Kashmir News
Srinagar, Jan 14: The water bodies including famed Dal Lake froze on Thursday as Srinagar recorded the coldest night in 30 years with the mercury dropping at minus 8.4 degrees celsius.
A Met department spokesperson said the city recorded the coldest night of the season so far at minus 8.4 degree, which is the coldest in 30 years.
The city recorded minus 11.3 degree in 1991 while the lowest minimum temperature recorded ever in Srinagar was minus 14.4 degree in 1893.
In 1995, the night temperature recorded in Srinagar was minus 8.3 degree.
Due to mercury dropping many degrees below freezing point, the water bodies including portion of famed Dal Lake froze today.
The boys and youngsters were seen playing cricket on the frozen Dal party. Some people and tourists also walked on the frozen portion of Dal Lake and clicked their pictures and videos.
The Shikarawalas found it difficult to move through frozen parts of the Dal Lake. They had to break the ice to make way for their boats.
People in some areas burnt wood to unfreeze the frozen water pipes. People in many areas including in outskirts of Srinagar complained of water shortage.
“Our taps were frozen due to chill,” they said and hoped that things may improve as the day progresses.
It was in 1965 when the entire lake was frozen and a jeep crossed the frozen surface from one end to another end. In the late 80s and 90s, the frozen lake became a major attraction for tourists and locals, who used to take photographs and play cricket on the icy surface. Later, walking and playing on the frozen surface of the lake was banned and police personnel used to be deployed to prevent any accident.
Meanwhile, State Emergency Operation Centre (SEOC) Srinagar has warned people against walking on the frozen water bodies.
SEOC Nodal Officer Aamir Ali said it has been observed that some people, particularly youth and children, attempt to walk on the frozen water bodies.
“Moving on this thin layer of frozen water, particularly Dal Lake is very risky and can result in slips, falls, fractures and fatal injuries,” he said.
Aamir said when the thickness of ice is less than 4 inches, it is very unsafe to walk, or play and the ice can break resulting in drowning. “There are many springs inside Dal Lake and the ice is very thin at these spots and it is difficult to spot these locations while walking or playing on the frozen surface”
District Magistrate and Chairman District Disaster Management Authority, Srinagar Shahid Iqbal Choudhary also issued an advisory to dissuade people from walking, playing or moving on frozen Dal Lake.
Quick Response Teams (QRTs) of J&K SDRF and River Police were deployed in Dal Lake, as a precautionary measure. (Additional inputs from UNI)