Cold, road blockade: Chitrali passenger dies near Lowari Tunnel

CHITRAL, Feb 10: A Chitrali passenger died while a woman got her hand fractured on the Lowari Tunnel access road due to severe cold and snow. [caption id="attachment_7695" align="alignleft" width="300"]Snow-capped near Lowari Tunnel.--GH Farooqui Snow-capped near Lowari Tunnel.–GH Farooqui[/caption] Hundreds of vehicles were stranded near the tunnel due to poor condition of the access roads with ditches in its middle and land sliding, glaciers. Salahuddin Salih, a social worker, complained to chitraltoday.net on telephone that thousands of Chitrali passengers going towards Peshawar and Islamabad were stopped from entering the tunnel at 10am on Friday. The tunnel had opened that day after a closure of one week due to snowfall. The passengers were forced to wait there for 24 hours in the chilly and severe cold weather surrounded by snow-capped mountains. He said one man belonging to Mroi died on the tunnel access road due to severe cold while a woman fell down and got her hand broken at Baradam village. The National Highway Authority (NHA) has failed to clear Lowari Tunnel roads for passengers on time. Although soldiers of 104 Engineering battalion of Pakistan Army have removed snow from Lowari Tunnel, the access roads on both sides still need some maintenance. It is worth mentioning that Lowari Tunnel remained close four days a week and opens only for three days that too from 12.30pm to 3.30pm. The body of a Chitrali man was also carried to Chitral after seven days after the tunnel opened.–Gul Hamaad Farooqi  ]]>

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