The minimum temperature in the capital city of Dhaka fell on Monday to 10° Celsius, the lowest in the city so far this winter, as the bitter cold wave that began on Sunday intensified further.
A strong chilling northerly wind was blowing almost all over Bangladesh on the day.
Except for a couple of places in Chattogram division, including Cox’s Bazar, the minimum temperature across Bangladesh on Monday fell to 10° Celsius or below, with the country’s lowest minimum temperature of 5.5° Celsius recorded at Srimangal, Sylhet.
The Bangladesh Meteorological Department predicted the cold wave to remain nearly unchanged through Tuesday with morning hours becoming increasingly blurry with dense fog disrupting communication.
‘The cold-wave condition is likely to persist through Tuesday,’ said meteorologist Abdul Mannan, adding that the temperature may go down further at places.
The met department said that a severe cold swept over Nilphamari, Chuadanga and Moulvibazar districts while Dhaka, Mymensingh, Rajshahi, Barishal, Rangpur and Khulna divisions were under a mild to moderate cold wave.
A mild to moderate cold wave was also sweeping over the regions of Sitakunda, Rangamati, Cumilla, Feni, Sandwip and Hatiya, according to the BMD data.
A severe cold wave occurs when the minimum temperature stays from 4° to 6° Celsius while a moderate cold wave indicates the minimum temperature between 6° and 8° Celsius and a mild cold wave indicates the minimum temperature from 8° to 10° Celsius.
The New Age correspondent in Lalmonirhat reported that 14 people died because of cold-related reasons in Rangpur division on Monday.
Of the deceased, four succumbed to their burn injuries suffered in fires lit for keeping warm, according to the burn unit at Rangpur Medical College Hospital.
The rest died of cold-related diseases such as pneumonia.
The deceased included four each from Rangpur and Lalmonirhat districts, three from Nilphamari, two from Kurigram and one from Gaibandha district.
‘The public hospital capacity in Rangpur division is under strain because of a continuous flow of cold patients,’ said Rangpur divisional health director Ahad Ali, adding that on Monday 913 cold patients were hospitalised while 3,112 others were treated at public hospitals in the division.
The health emergency control room in Dhaka said that 4,165 people visited government hospitals across the country with cold diseases on Monday.
The control room further said that so far six people had died because of cold-related diseases in Bangladesh since November 1.
The New Age correspondent in Tangail reports: Dense fog led to a 25-km-long tailback on the Dhaka–Bangabandhu Bridge highway on Monday morning.
Elenga highway police outpost in-charge Kamal Hossain said that dense fog slowed traffic on the highway after midnight and the situation worsened after two accidents occurred.
Both the accidents took place at the same place of Jokerchar area in Kalihati three hours apart from 3:00am.
None was injured in the accidents but the vehicles involved were badly damaged causing a serious disruption in the traffic movement until they were cleared from the highway.
Our correspondent in Munshiganj reports: The ferry service across the River Padma between the Shimulia and Kathalbari ghats was suspended from 6:00am to 7:30am because of dense fog.
Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation deputy general manager Zillur Rahman told New Age that the ferry service across the Padma between the Paturia and Daulatdia ghats was suspended for six hours after 4:00am because of low visibility.
Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport director AHM Touhid-ul-Hasan said that two international flights were diverted to Kolkata and Chattogram and several domestic flights were delayed as the operations at the airport remained suspended for over two hours after 8:15am.
According to the BMD forecast, moderate to thick fog may continue to occur from the midnight to the morning.
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