Fog plays havoc on transport

Flights delayed, ferry services disrupted

An aircraft lands on the lone runway of Shahjalal International Airport in dense fog just before noon yesterday. The airport operates flights only 15 hours a day to resurface the runway. A heavier fog could send flight schedule in chaos.

A thick blanket of fog caused disruption in all modes of transport movement in many areas across the country, causing sufferings to thousands of passengers between Monday night and yesterday morning.

Launch and ferry services came to a halt for hours, while bus and train passengers had to spend several hours more than usual in terminals and stations before reaching their destinations.

A number of planned flights were delayed for hours due to the dense fog.

The meteorological department forecasts light to moderate rain across the country today.

Sanaul Hoque, a meteorologist of the Bangladesh Meteorological Department, said “The density of fog may decrease after the rain.

“It [rain] will also reduce the day’s temperature which might come down to below ten degrees Celsius at some parts of the country.”

Usually around 40 launches, which start for Dhaka from different coastal areas, reach Sadarghat Launch Terminal by 8:30am everyday.

But, only two launches moored at the terminal till 12:15 pm yesterday while many others reached the terminal in the afternoon and evening, said Saiful Haque Khan, a senior official of BIWTA.

Samad Mandal, a manager of Hanif Paribahan, said the long-route buses took three hours more to reach their destinations due to the blanket of thick fog on the highways.

Dhaka Divisional Railway Manager Sardar Shahdat Ali said they had to reorganise the train schedule as many trains reached their destinations one or two hours late.

An official of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport said some morning flights took off two to three hours later than the schedule time due to inclement weather.

Huge traffic congestion in ferry and launch terminals at Mawa-Kawrakandi and Daulatdia-Paturia routes kept thousands of people stranded until operations of water vessels resumed yesterday morning.

Masters of seven ferries were forced to anchor their vessels in the mid river after being unable to see through the thick fog on Monday night, reports our Munshiganj correspondent quoting Sirajul Islam, a manager of BIWTC, Mawa office.

The ferries were carrying at least 115 vehicles.

Over 700 vehicles got stranded at Paturia while 600 at Daulatdia terminal as thick fog forced the authorities to suspend ferry services for 11 hours till 10:15am yesterday, said Ashraf Ullah Khan, another manager of BIWTC, Paturia office.

Our Barisal correspondent reports, dense fog halted ferry services on Barisal-Kuakata and Barisal-Bhola routes for 11 hours till 10:00am yesterday.

The launches took around 8 to 9 hours more than usual to reach at Barisal Terminal.

Source: The Daily Star


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