Dense fog disrupted communications on railway, waterway, road and air routes across the country on Sunday as the ongoing mild to severe cold wave continued to sweep over most regions.
The fog disrupted the country’s rail communications for the last three days which turned severe on Sunday.
Several hundred vehicles remained stuck in long queues on roads to the country’s major ferry terminals causing immense sufferings to passengers and transport workers.
All flight operations were suspended at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport for about six hours on the day.
National Health Crisis Management Centre claimed that no death from cold was reported on Saturday as a cold wave continued to sweep across the country over the past week, affecting elderly people and children, mostly in the worst affected northern and western parts.
But since November a total of 11,120 patients were admitted to hospitals with acute respiratory infection while 35,476 with diarrhoea and 21,980 with other diseases, the health centre said.
Besides, five people died of acute respiratory infection and one of diarrhoea since November.
According to Bangladesh Meteorological Department, the moderate to thick fog might occur over the country during midnight to morning and it might continue at the places till noon on Monday.
Meteorologist Mizanur Rahman said that the cold wave might prevail for the next two or three days.
He also spoke of another cold wave likely in the end of January.
On Sunday, almost all trains on northern and southern routes delayed by up to eight hours while a huge number of passengers were seen waiting at the capital’s Kamalapur railway station.
Sundarban Express on Dhaka-Khulna delayed by eight hours as the train left Kamalapur station at 14:14pm instead of its schedule at 6:20am.
Nilsagar Express on Dhaka-Chilahati route was delayed by about eight hours as it arrived at Kamalapur at 15:42pm instead of its schedule at 8:00am.
Kamalapur station master Sitangshu Chakraborti told New Age that the pressure of passengers had increased in the last few days as they avoided roads in the fear of accidents.
Gabtoli Bus Terminal Committee president Mofijul Huq Bebu said that the buses during night reached their destinations on northern and southern routes behind schedule as they moved slowly to avoid accidents.
New Age correspondent in Manikganj reported that the ferry service on Paturia-Daulatdia river route was suspended for six and half hours from Sunday dawn due to dense fog.
Mohi Uddin Rasal, manager of Bangladesh Inland Water Transport Corporation at Paturia office, said that the authorities suspended the service from around 4:30am till 11:00am to avoid accident.
Six ferries got stuck in the mid-river while seven ferries remained stranded at Paturia and three others at Daulatdia with vehicles and passengers for the hours.
Hundreds of passengers bound for the south and south-western districts faced serious problems due to the disruption in the ferry service.
Around 800 vehicles were seen waiting at Paturia while 600 at Daulatdia.
New Age correspondent in Munshiganj reported that the ferry service on Shimulia-Kathalbari route was suspended for four and half hour between 6:00am and 10:30am due to dense fog.
Four ferries were stuck in the mid-Padma due to dense fog.
United News of Bangladesh reported that the flight operations at the airport were disrupted for six hours on the day.
‘The airport was covered in thick fog leading to diversion of Kuala Lumpur-Dhaka fight of Biman Bangladesh Airlines to Kolkata. Besides, all domestic flights were cancelled as the runway visibility dropped since 5:10am,’ Rezaul Karin, public relations officer of Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh, said.
The airport authorities also stopped both inbound and outbound flight operations, the officer said, adding that a domestic flight left the airport after 11:00am as fog lifted.
Flight operations at the airport have been kept suspended for over three and half hours from 2:10am to 5:50am since January 1 due to runway’s renovation work. And it will continue till March 31, said the CAAB official.
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