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Motorway closed as thick fog engulfs most cities of Punjab

LAHORE: The motorway was closed as thick fog engulfed most cities in Punjab including Lahore on Saturday morning leaving visibility at a low.

The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) recorded a temperature of 2°C in Lahore on Saturday morning. The motorway was closed and flights cancelled as Punjab was hit by thick fog.

According to a Motorway Police spokesperson, the M-3 was closed from Lahore to Samundari, while M-4 was closed from Pindi Battian to Faisalabad for the safety of commuters.

There is thick fog on the highway at Thokhar, Chung, Maraka, Shamki Battian and Manga Mandi area of Lahore and other areas of Punjab including Pattoki, Jambar, and Phoolnagar. There is dense fog in Renala Khurd, Habibabad, Adah Kissan, and Okara as well as Kiswa Sahiwal, Biryah, Chichawatni, Iqbalnagar, and Mian Channu.

The spokesperson said the visibility is only up to 50 metres and commuters should use front and rear-end fog lights. He warned commuters from speeding on the highway and keeping a distance from other cars.

Meanwhile, the PMD said the first rain of the new year is expected tonight (Saturday) in Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Kashmir, while temperatures will drop further.

The weather will stay cloudy and rainy for the next three days in Lahore, the Met office said, predicting that the maximum temperature for today will be 15°C.

On Friday, the mercury dropped to 1.8°C in Lahore, while Met officials predicted similar weather conditions for the next 24 hours. They said continental air is prevailing over most parts and a strong westerly wave is likely to enter Pakistan tomorrow on Sunday.

Cold and dry weather is predicted for most parts of the country including in upper Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, northern Balochistan, Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan.

Dense fog is likely to prevail in plain areas of Punjab and upper Sindh and frost is likely to occur in some plain areas of Punjab during the morning hours, the Met office said.