LAHORE -  Dense fog and biting cold continued to disturb routine life in plains of the country including Lahore yesterday with experts predicting the prevailing harsh weather conditions to persist during the current week.

Fog started falling in the evening and become so dense at midnight that the visibility reduced to zero in open areas.

Low visibility hampered vehicular movement on major inter and intra city routes including Motorway and National Highway besides disturbing rail and air traffic.

Fog forced closures of portions of motorway at midnight, causing difficulties for the motorists who left with no other option except to use alternative routes including National Highway.

Low visibility caused delay in arrival and departure of international and domestic flights. It also disturbed rail traffic and almost all trains reached to their respective destinations hours behind the scheduled time.

Excessive use of heaters at offices and homes led to decrease in gas pressure. In certain areas, women faced difficulties in cooking meals for families. 

Skardu remained the coldest place in the country where mercury dropped 08 degree Celsius below the freezing point. Minimum temperature in Gupis and Hunza was recorded -06C, Gilgit -03C, Astore and Bagrote, Dir, Parachinar and Kalat -02C and Kalam-01C. Maximum and minimum temperature in Lahore was recorded 21C and 08C respectively. Relative humidity in the evening was recorded 76 per cent.

According to the experts, continental air is prevailing over most parts of the country.

The local meteorological department has forecast mainly cold and dry weather for most parts of the country including Lahore during the current week. Dense foggy conditions are likely to prevail over plain areas of Punjab and upper Sindh during night and morning hours.