Another Western Disturbance to hit North India

It will bring heavy rain and snowfall in the first week of February

By Akshay Deoras
Published: Friday 30 January 2015

It will bring heavy rain and snowfall in the first week of February

Already decorated with snow, the hills in north Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand are going to witness another round of heavy snowfall in the first week of February as intense cold weather continues to grip North India.
Gulmarg in Jammu and Kashmir recorded a maximum temperature of -2.6°C on Thursday, January 29, and a minimum temperature of -9.6°C on Friday, January 30. Extreme winter conditions are also being observed in parts of Ladakh and Leh, which recorded a minimum temperature of -17°C this morning.

Starting from Sunday, February 1, a new Western Disturbance will start bringing precipitation, both rain and snow, to North India. The event is likely to continue till Wednesday, February 4. Below are the expected impacts of this weather event and the precautions people must follow to stay weather-ready.

Expected impacts:

Saturday, January 31: Clouds arrive in Jammu and Kashmir from evening onwards due to due to the Western Disturbance. Over the night, the clouds may spread to Himachal Pradesh and Punjab, including Chandigarh.

Sunday, February 1: Jammu and Kashmir, particularly the Kashmir Valley located in the western part of the state, will experience light to moderate rain showers (up to 25mm) and light snow. Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand will also see light rains and snow fall. Rainfall in Srinagar will lead to a drop in maximum temperatures. However, rise in the minimum temperatures is expected in these states due to cloud cover. Partly cloudy weather will be in store for Punjab, Chandigarh, Uttarakhand, Haryana and Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR). However, no severe weather is expected.

Monday, February 2: Heavy rain and snowfall will be expected in the Kashmir Valley, Central Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. This may lead to accumulation of up to 8 inches of snow in Himachal Pradesh, particularly around Manali/Lahaul-Spiti regions.

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Travellers must take precautions as roads may remain blocked and remote areas cut off due to heavy snowfall. This may prompt authorities to suspend vehicular traffic on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway in the evening hours.

Light snowfall and rain will continue in Uttarakhand. Rains are also expected in Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh and western Rajasthan. Residents of Delhi and NCR may expect light showers.

Tuesday, February 3: Rainfall and snow will turn very heavy in Jammu and Kashmir, particularly in the Kashmir Valley, and Himachal Pradesh between Monday night and the following morning. This will block more roads and cut off more areas. Vehicular traffic is likely to be suspended on the Jammu-Srinagar national highway. People are advised to take precautions from evening hours of Monday.

Moderate rain and snow will be experienced in Uttarakhand. Rains are again expected in Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi-NCR. Eastern Madhya Pradesh and adjoining parts of Uttar Pradesh may also receive light rains due to the Western Disturbance.

Wednesday, February 4: As the effects of Western Disturbance starts receding, the weather will clear up in North India from afternoon onwards.

Tips to stay weather-ready:

People who live in remote areas of Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh must start preparing from Sunday or February 1.

  • Store sufficient heating fuel. Store a good supply of dry, seasoned wood for your fireplace or wood-burning stove.
  • Keep adequate dry clothing and blankets, stock of medicines and food. Insulate your home by installing proper windows or covering windows with plastic from the inside to keep the cold air out.
  • Bring pets/companion animals inside during winter weather. Move other animals or livestock to sheltered areas with non-frozen drinking water.
  • Minimise travel, avoid when not necessary, and stay indoors in this period, particularly between Monday (February 2) and Wednesday (February 4).
  • Protect yourself from frostbite and hypothermia by wearing warm, loose-fitting, lightweight clothing in several layers.
  • Follow the warnings issued by local government agencies.

Refer this link for more tips regarding how to prepare from this western disturbance.

Akshay Deoras is an independent weather forecaster

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