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Haze engulfs Shimla, flights grounded

A minimum 5,000 metres of visibility is required for flights to operate. However, the visibility was just 2,500 metres today.

india Updated: Jun 14, 2018 16:08 IST
Gaurav Bisht
Gaurav Bisht
Hindustan Times, Shimla
(HT File)

Dense haze engulfed Shimla town and its surrounding areas on Thursday morning, resulting in cancellation of the only Air India flight from here due to low visibility.

Jubberhatti airport director Sunil Maggirwar said, “The town remained engulfed in thick fog since morning and flights were cancelled due to low visibility.”

Flights from Delhi to Shimla and Chandigarh were also cancelled due to haze and dust problems he added.

“We require a minimum 5,000 metres of visibility but it was just 2,500 metres today,” Air India customer service agent Chhayal Singh said.

“Air India has deployed a 42-passenger plane but due to topographical conditions it only carries 15 passengers from Shimla,” he said.

“A total of 36 passengers were to land in Shimla. The flight from Delhi reaches Shimla at 7: 30 am and leaves for Delhi from Shimla at 7:45 am,” he added.

“ There is a dense blanket of mist. The hazy weather condition in Shimla is prevailing due to high humidity levels . The humidity in Shimla town was recorded at 75%,” director regional meterological office Manmohan Singh said .

“It has happened due to suspension of tiny droplets of water on dust particles near the ground, thereby reducing visibility,” he added.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had flagged off the subsidised air service from Shimla airport in 2017 to give impetus to regional connectivity. Vijaya Mallay-owned Spice Jet had grounded its air service to Shimla in 2012. Since then the town had remained without air connectivity for five years.

First Published: Jun 14, 2018 16:04 IST

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