A crystal clear sky on Thursday, a day after heavy snowfall in the state, brought with it coldest morning of the season and froze everything that came in contact with the air. Temperature suddenly plummeted many notches below the freezing point freezing every source of water including drinking water lines.
Manali recorded spine chilling night at -7.4 degrees Celsius and district administration has announced to close all the schools till Sunday. Keylong in Lahaul-Spiti district recorded minimum temperature of -17.8 degrees Celsius, 9 degrees below the normal temperature for this time of season. Mercury in Shimla plunged to -3.8 degrees Celsius. Kalpa in Kinnaur shivered at -10.6 degrees Celsius while minimum temperature of Solan was dropped to -2 degrees Celsius. Dharmashala, Mandi and Bhunter recorded minimum temperatures of 2.1, 5.8 and 0.5 degrees Celsius respectively.
Not only drinking water pipes frozen completely in the most of the parts of the state but brooks and sewer lines too has frozen completely. Reports from Keylong said the waters of Chenab river have frozen partially. Vehicles in Upper Shimla, Kinnaur, Lahaul and Manali had tough time driving on the slippery frosty roads. People had to pour hot water over the frozen pipes to get drinking water.
Traffic was affected on Shimla-Kufri-Narkanda, Kharapatthar-Rohru and Shimla-Chopal routes due to heavy snowfall on Wednesday. In Manali, tourists could not move beyond Nehru Kund, 6km from here, due to dangerous associated with frosty road. Dozens of other roads have been blocked after snowfall. People living at high altitude areas are facing the shortage of drinking water and power supply has been interrupted.
Cold waves throughout the day restricted normal activities of the residents. Meanwhile, Shimla meteorological department has forecast of more snow in coming days which has shivered apple growers of the state who are not able to complete their necessary works at orchards.