Red alert in Delhi as temperature drops to 2°C

The India Meteorological Department issued a ‘red’ warning after the national capital recorded its coldest day of the season as the minimum temperature plummeted to 2.4 degrees Celsius in the morning. Red denotes extreme weather condition.

Mercury even plunged to below two degrees Celsius in some areas with the Lodhi Road Observatory recording a low of 1.7 degrees Celsius.

Dense fog enveloped the city reducing visibility and affecting air traffic and vehicular movement in the streets.

The IMD issued the warning for yesterday and today after the temperature in parts of Delhi on Saturday morning was 1.9 degrees Celsius. At 2.4 degrees Celsius, this is Safdarjung Enclave’s lowest minimum temperature since 1992. During the 1930s, the minimum temperature was recorded as low as 0.0 degrees Celsius.

Due to dense fog, flight operations and train services were affected. Several flights had to be diverted or cancelled, as trains ran behind schedule.

According to IMD, from December 31 onwards, rain is likely in the capital and its adjoining areas such as Noida, Gurugram, Ghaziabad and Faridabad. This weather phenomenon is likely to continue till January 3.

The Safdarjung Observatory, whose reading is considered the official marking for the city, recorded 2.4 degrees Celsius in the morning. The same temperature was recorded on December 30, 2013. Before that the coldest day in December was December 11, 1996 when minimum temperature recorded at the observatory was 2.3 degrees Celsius.

With chilling cold continuing to sweep Delhi-NCR, the region is expected to record its second-coldest December since 1901.

Temperatures in Nagpur also plunged to 5.1 degrees Celsius, the second-lowest of the century for the city. In 2018, it recorded 3.4 degrees Celsius on December 29, which was the lowest in 100 years.

Many parts of Himachal Pradesh recorded temperatures below the freezing point on Saturday, with the cold wave likely to intensify further if rain and snowfall occur next week as predicted by the Meteorological Department.

Kufri, Manali, Solan, Bhuntar, Sundernagar, Seobagh and Kalpa shivered at sub-zero temperatures in the state where Keylong was the coldest place recording minus 11.5 degrees Celsius.

Dense fog caused low visibility in parts of Una, Kangra and Mandi districts, Director of Shimla Meteorological centre Manmohan Singh said.

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