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HindustanTimes Tue,02 Sep 2014

Dust storm cools jumping mercury, spares standing crop

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, May 03, 2014
First Published: 08:28 IST(3/5/2014) | Last Updated: 08:29 IST(3/5/2014)

Strong winds and a dust storm hit the region on Friday evening, bringing respite from the heat wave and causing no damage to property and crop.

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The meteorological department in Chandigarh recorded wind speed of up to 65 kmph in several parts of Punjab and Haryana, including the city, followed by rain. Some parts of Punjab reported thunderstorms till late evening but no loss to structures and wheat crop.

The duststorm reported around 6pm in Chandigarh also hit Amritsar, Ludhiana, Patiala and Jalandhar in Punjab and Ambala, Kaithal and Karnal in Haryana. “The intensity varied from place to place but the highest speed was 65 kmph, followed by traces of rain all over these places,” said Chandigarh metereological department director Surender Paul.

Asked about the cause of the storm, he said it was the sudden rise in temperature coupled with western disturbances. The dust storm and rain bring a temporary relief from high-temperature conditions in the region over the past few days. In some parts of the region, the sky will remain cloudy, with more rain spells expected in Punjab and Haryana in the next 72 hours.

On Thursday, Hisar at 45 degrees Celsius and Amritsar at 42.8°C were the hottest this season in Haryana and Punjab, respectively. Mercury went over 40 in Amritsar, Ludhaina, and Patiala in Punjab; Bhiwani and Karnal in Haryana; and Una in Himachal Pradesh in the past three days.

On Friday, a marginal dip in the temperature was recorded across the region after the dust storm. Hisar was still the hottest at 43.2°C; and Amritsar still the most sizzling in Punjab at 42.0°C. At 42.2°C, Una was hotter than even Amritsar.

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