Dense fog blankets Punjab, roads and air traffic comes to a halt

Dense fog

LAHORE: Dense fog wreaked havoc on both road and air travel in most areas of Punjab compelling authorities to shut down major thoroughfares and disrupt air traffic.

At Lahore Airport, the morning haze posed a significant challenge for incoming flights, with diminished visibility on the runway reducing to a mere 50 meters.

The ensuing difficulties prompted aviation authorities to implement the Instrument Landing System (ILS) Cat 3 technology, a critical component for precision landings in low visibility scenarios.

While the system ensured the safe landing of some planes, others faced delays and were temporarily barred from landing, causing a ripple effect of disruptions.

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Motorway closures

The motorway network, a lifeline for transportation, faced extensive closures due to the zero visibility conditions.

Motorway M2, stretching from Thokar Niaz Baig to Khanqah Dogran, witnessed complete closures, as did M1 from Burhan to Peshawar Toll Plaza, M3 from Faizpur to Darkhana, M4 from Shershah Multan to Abdul Hakeem, M5 from Sher Shah Multan to Zahir Peer, and Lahore-Sialkot Motorway M11 from Mehmoodboti to Sambaryal.

The fog’s impact extended beyond urban centers, affecting highways near Dunyapur, Arifwala, and Deepalpur, where visibility plummeted to zero, rendering vehicular movement nearly impossible.

Peshawar, too, experienced disruptions, with the Nowshera-Peshawar GT Road shrouded in dense fog, prompting closures on the motorway from Burhan to Peshawar interchange.

Later at near noon several motorways were opened for traffic according to motorway police spokesman.

Accidents due to fog

Tragically, the extreme weather claimed a life near Pakpattan, where a car plunged into the Sutlej River, highlighting the perils faced by motorists in the blinding fog.

In Burewala, residents grappled with a dual assault as the fog triggered power outages by tripping feeders, leaving the city and surrounding villages in darkness.

Mobile phone networks also faltered in several areas due to the blackout.

Weather outlook

The Meteorological Department’s forecast predicts the persistent presence of the foggy veil in the coming days, emphasizing the need for caution and vigilance.

Residents are advised to limit outdoor activities in the face of plummeting temperatures and near-nonexistent visibility.

As Punjab grapples with this atmospheric challenge, the resilience of its residents is tested, and authorities work tirelessly to restore normalcy in the wake of nature’s unexpected disruption.

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