Srinagar, Feb 3: Several parts of Kashmir, including Srinagar city, experienced fresh snowfall and rains in the past 24 hours even as the Meteorological Department (MeT) predicted moderate to heavy precipitation during the next 48 hours.
The snowfall began in the higher reaches of Kashmir early morning, gradually spreading to the plains as the day unfolded.
Daytime temperatures hovered between zero and 3 degrees Celsius in most places of Kashmir.
The authorities issued avalanche warnings in hilly and mountainous areas of Kashmir, emphasising caution for motorists due to slippery roads.
The MeT officials here said that from February 3 to 4, generally cloudy weather is expected towards the afternoon with the possibility of light to moderate snow and rain at many places towards Saturday evening till Sunday evening with chances of heavy snowfall over isolated higher reaches.
“Middle and higher reaches of north, western, and south Kashmir may receive 8 to 12 inches of snow, lower reaches and plains may receive 3 to 6 inches, while plains of central Kashmir may receive rain with 1-2 inches of snow,” they said.
“Jammu division may receive light to moderate rain with thunder and lightning and light to moderate snow over higher reaches of Pir Panjal range and Chenab Valley during the period,” the MeT officials said.
They said that on February 5, partly due to generally cloudy weather with the possibility of light snow over isolated higher reaches is expected.
“From February 6 to 13, generally dry weather is expected,” the MeT officials said.
Although there was relief from the intense cold conditions of the previous night, the minimum temperatures remained several degrees below the normal for this time of the year.
Ski-resort of Gulmarg in Baramulla district recorded a low of minus 10.6 degrees Celsius, slightly higher than the previous night’s minus 12 degrees Celsius.
The health resort of Pahalgam in south Kashmir recorded a low of minus 8.3 degrees Celsius, up from minus 11.9 degrees Celsius the previous night.
In south Kashmir, both Kokernag and Qazigund towns recorded a low of minus 5.4 degrees Celsius. Srinagar experienced a low of minus 1.7 degrees Celsius.
On Friday, temperatures across Kashmir had sharply dropped, with unofficial data indicating that Larnoo town in Anantnag district recorded an extreme minus 17.1 degrees Celsius.
Sonamarg resort on the Srinagar-Leh highway followed closely with a low of minus 15.1 degrees Celsius.
With the Meteorological centre here predicting moderate to heavy snowfall over the next 48 hours, eight districts of J&K received avalanche warnings on Saturday.
The Jammu and Kashmir Disaster Management Authority (JKDMA) said an avalanche with a medium danger level was likely to occur above 2400 metres over districts of Bandipora, Baramulla, Ganderbal, and Kupwara in Kashmir and Doda, Ramban, and Poonch in Chenab Valley and Pir Panjal regions in the next 24 hours.
“People living in these areas have been advised to take precautions and avoid venturing out into areas prone to avalanche,” the JKDMA said.