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24 December 2011

Cold Wave in Bangladesh on Thursday, 22 December, 2011 at 20:07 (08:07 PM) UTC.

A protracted cold wave has claimed at least 30 lives in Bangladesh over the past seven days, with temperatures dipping to as low as six degrees in what officials said was an unusually long spell. "The lowest temperature recorded so far since the outbreak of the spell is six degrees Celsius in Jessore which is not unusual for the season but this is for the first time in several years the cold wave continued to grip the country for so many days," a met office spokesman said. He warned that the current "mild to moderate cold wave" was likely to sweep particularly northern and southeastern regions over next several days. A growing number of people were crowding hospitals and health facilities, with the season seeing a spurt in cold-related ailments like pneumonia and asthma. Unconfirmed reports said the cold wave so far has claimed up to 30 lives in different parts of the country. The latest such deaths were reported from Jessore where the cold overnight claimed two more lives. "We are in bad shape. Reports said areas of the northwestern region had been shrouded in thick fog over the past few days, affecting the livelihood of many people. Thick fog also widely disrupted communication systems, with vehicles being affected by visibility issues. Ferry passengers appeared to be the worse sufferers as services in waterways had been suspended in several areas. The lowest temperature for the day in Jessore was recorded at eight degrees Celsius, while in Dhaka the mercury settled at the lowest mark of 12 degrees.