Icy roads give tough time to motorists as Srinagar freezes at eight-year-low temperature

Dal lake freezes (File Pic: Aman Farooq/GK)

With Srinagar freezing at an eight-year low temperature last night, roads in the capital city and elsewhere turned icy, resulting into treacherous driving conditions on Wednesday morning. 

As per news agency GNS, the motorists had a tough time reaching their destinations as a glassy layer of ice was formed on roads making driving nearly impossible especially during the early hours of the morning. 

With the sun coming out, there was some ease on plain roads, but driving on steep streets remained tough. 

The slippery conditions also led to massive traffic jams across the city even as snow mounds on the roadsides nearly a week after it stopped snowing compounded the gridlocks. 

“It was nearly impossible to drive early in the morning and it took me about an hour and a half to reach Dalgate from Lal Bazar, a distance of barely ten kilometers,” Mohammad Sarfaraz, a Srinagar resident told GNS. 

Nazir Ahmad, a resident of Sonawar Srinagar, said that after snowfall earlier this month, traffic jams have become more frequent especially during peak morning and evening hours. 

He urged the administration to clear snow from roadsides especially at key locations, as narrow roads lead to traffic jams.

Motorists from other parts of the valley too complained of the slippery condition of the road caused by the freezing temperature. 

On January 5, the district administration in Srinagar issued an advisory to motorists, among others asking them to check road conditions prior to departure and plan accordingly. 

It said the posted speed limits were designed for optimal weather conditions and urged the motorists to reduce their speed significantly in view of the heavy snow. 

The minimum temperatures plummeted across Kashmir valley with Srinagar recording the lowest temperature of minus 7.8 degree celsius of the season so far and the coldest January night in the past eight years, according to the MeT office.  

Similarly, the minimum temperatures plummeted to minus 11.3°C in Pahalgam, minus 9.3°C in Qazigund, minus 9.9°C in Kokernag, minus 5.6°C in Kupwara, and minus 10°C in Gulmarg, the world-famous skiing resort in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district.