ISLAMABAD, Jan 22 (APP): Tourists visiting hilly areas of the country to enjoy snowy season during the current rain spell have been advised by the concerned authorities to take extra precautionary measures to avoid any untoward situation.
Every year, a large number of local and international tourists plan to visit the hilly areas of the country to enjoy the picturesque beauty of natural scenes including lush green valleys, beautiful mountains, snow peaks, meadows, lakes and water falls.
Taking advantage of the of the weekly offs as well as snow fall forecast by the weather experts, this year too, a number of tourists are rushing towards the various hilly spots offering great fun opportunities for the nature lovers.
Samia khan a mother of two kids while talking to APP said that the last year incident of deaths in Murree during snow fall is still haunting me and my family so this year we decided not to visit Murree.
After the snow made its appearance in hilly areas my children are constantly insisting to visit any snow fall point so we are compelled to plan a visit to any other place like Kashmir or Swat.
Ali Raza, a student who is planning a trip to northern areas along with his university fallows said that snowfall season always captivate and fascinate me a lot and i am much thrilled to reach tourist spot even after the news that the whole northern region is facing under intense cold wave conditions.
He said that Pakistan is a beautiful country with number of tourist’s attractions but the beauty of the north of Pakistan is exceptional. During the snowy weather majestic view of layers and layers of white snow all around is the scene which cannot be described in words, he added.
Sadiq Javid a tourist operator while sharing his views said that snow season is the time of good business for all people attached with the tourism industry including hotels, tour operators, car rental services providers and local businessmen.
He also urged the tourists to ensure safety measures before packing the bags for travel as the authorities have issued a detailed guideline for tourists as extremely low temperatures were being recorded in the Northern Areas of the country.
Earlier, the concerned authorities including Pakistan metrological department (PMD), National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) and Pakistan Tourism Development Cooperation (PTDC) issued a guideline for the tourists of northern areas to take timely precautions to ensure personal and collective safety in extreme weather conditions.
The guideline issued by the concerned underlined that the cold-wave-like conditions and extremely low temperatures were being experienced in northern part of the country which could further accentuate in the coming days.
It is guided to the visitors to dress in layers, wear a warm hat or cap, scarf and gloves or mittens to protect body heat from windchill or extreme cold.
The travelers were guided that before going out, check for the latest weather or travel advisories issued for your area and take appropriate pre-cautionary measures.
It is added to avoid travelling in low visibility conditions and during icy road conditions when possible. Before travelling ensure your vehicle is properly serviced, including heater, brakes, radiator and replacing worn out tyres.”, it said.
The guideline exhorted to keep essential supplies in your vehicle when travelling for use in emergencies including additional warm clothing, warm blankets, first aid kit, water-proof matches or lighter, windshield ice-scraper, booster cables, basic toolkit, bag of sand or cat litter (to provide traction on ice or snow), wheel chains, spare wheel or repair kit, dry food or fruits and drinking water.
The guidelines noted that in-case vehicle stranded or one was forced to pull over due to weather conditions, following measures should be considered including contact National Highway and Motorway Police Helpline at 130 if travelling on a National Highway or Motorway for assistance.
The guideline urged the travelers to keep vehicle windows slightly open for fresh air or ventilation and ensure that vehicle’s exhaust pipe is not blocked by snow, ice or debris and in snowy conditions, make sure to check once every hour to keep your exhaust cleared,” it said.
It underlined that special focus must be given to elderly and children.
“They must be kept warm through layers of dressing and may even be huddled in case of exposure to extreme temperatures.”