Kashmir witnessing longest dry spell of decade

Kashmir witnessing longest dry spell of decade

No Rains, Snow For 5th Consecutive Month

As the Metrological Department predicted no rains or snow for the coming week, ongoing dry spell is likely to enter fifth month, Kashmir’s longest dry period of the decade. 

Sonam Lotus, Director local MeT Department told Greater Kashmir that dry spell continues as western disturbances failed to bring enough moisture to Kashmir.

“From mid-September to till date, Kashmir has only recorded 5mm of rainfall against the normal rainfall of 100mm,” he said.

He informed as per normal rainfall, the Kashmir must have received more than 100 mm rainfall from September to December.

“It is the biggest dry spell that Kashmir has witnessed in a decade. Every year, we witness a few months of dry weather, but this year it has persisted for a longer time,” said Lotus. 

He informed that Kashmir had witnessed a long dry spell in 2007, but that had lasted only for three months. 

“In 2007, no rainfall was recorded for consecutive three months; October, November and December. However, in 2016, the dry spell is likely to enter consecutive fifth month. I am sorry, there is no good news (prediction) as dry weather would continue for next ten days or at least for a week,” he said.

In July and August, this year, 31mm and 16mm rainfall was recorded respectively and since then the dry spell continues.

Srinagar on Tuesday recorded maximum temperature of 10.5 degree Celsius and minimum temperature of minus 4.5 degrees Celsius while Pahalgam recorded minus 4.3 degrees Celsius and Gulmarg minus 1.6 degrees Celsius, the official said. 

He informed that Kargil recorded the maximum temperature minus 6.1 degree Celsius and minimum temperature minus 11.5 degrees Celsius.

 “The dry spell would continue till next week. However, light rainfall may occur at isolated places on higher reaches within next 24 hours,” said an official. 

The present weather conditions had resulted in various ailments including cough and fever in Kashmir. The presence of intense fog has disrupted air traffic at Srinagar International Airport several times, with most of the flights getting cancelled. 

Doctors and experts have advised people to take precautionary measures to avoid falling prey to cold-related diseases, including flu and common cold. 

People across Kashmir are experiencing a surge in flu, cold and other respiratory ailments, with doctors asserting that they have been witnessing increase in patient load at hospitals over complaints of cold-related ailments. 

As per records at Kashmir’s tertiary care hospitals, there has been a three-fold increase in patients with respiratory symptoms. While doctors say it is impossible to completely avoid these ailments, adopting a few changes and practices in routine life could reduce chances of catching cold. 

They advised people to avoid going outdoors in mornings and evenings, when there is more of chill as it can exacerbate asthma and if going outdoors is unavoidable, people should wear adequate warm clothing and cover their mouths and nose with a clean muffler.