In what could be the largest single fog episode across the globe, a layer of unbroken fog has formed over 2,000 km across the Indian subcontinent. It started from central Pakistan in the west, continued through the Indo-Gangetic plains and ended near Tripura. This massive blanket of fog on Wednesday is being termed as “Superfog”. This spread of massive fog was larger than others spread in places like China, Italy and California valley, Wion News said.
The fog that started on Christmas covering eastern part of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar soon spread to the west, including Delhi by the end of the year. On January 2, It spread to Punjab and went on to move west into Pakistan. The severe fog affected rail, road transport and aviation causing a dip in day temperatures across the entire region.
Insat 3D, which captured the image in its daytime multi-channel fog detection system, said that the fog was covering at least four countries including Pakistan, India, Nepal and Bangladesh. The superfog actually began on Christmas Day in eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. In previous years, only fog episode compared to this scale was reported from the same region only.
As per IMD website, as many as 15 airports in India reported moderate to severe fog between 6.30am and 9.30am on Wednesday. These airports include Patna, Agartala, Guwahati,Gaya, Allahabad, Gorakhpur, Lucknow, Agra, Rae Bareli, Varanasi, Jammu, Chandigarh, Pantnagar and Ludhiana . Amritsar was the worst hit, which had a visibility level below 100m for 18 hours, from 6.30pm on Tuesday till 12.30pm next day.
In the meantime, bitterly cold conditions swept across Haryana and Punjab even as air, road and rail travellers faced cancellation, suspended services and delays due to heavy fog covering the region on Thursday. The cold wave continued to grip Narnaul in Haryana and Bathinda in Punjab. The mercury in these two places settled at 1.5 degrees and 2.8 degrees Celsius respectively, a MeT department official said.Chandigarh was also enveloped with thick fog earlier in the day. Cold winds forced a large number of residents to stay indoors as the minimum temperature dipped to 5.2 degrees Celsius.