There is a great deal of dialogue and discussion going on about the recent unfortunate events in our northern region, especially in and around Murree. Everyone shared their views on the reasons and positive suggestions for eliminating the recurrence of such incidents.
Almost everyone is talking about the vastness of roads and areas where people are trapped. Admittedly, if you collect more space than capacity and capacity, be it roads, community halls, malls, or any other public places/public roads, it will disrupt normal operations.
Snow is a weather event that disrupts daily life, especially the flow of traffic. It can also lead to serious traffic accidents. In developed countries, road maintenance/transportation and highway administrations in areas that often snow in winter have full snow removal crews and very comprehensive programs to implement during blizzards.
The goal is to make roads easier and safer for passengers. Europe, North America/Canada, and other Scandinavian countries are good examples. Obviously, as a driver and user of the road, it is also my responsibility to drive safely and follow the established rules. These countries appear to be following the lead of many that have responded proactively and reactively to such incidents.
Let us now discuss the recent Murree disaster in Pakistan. I’ve been following the many news and posts on social media about the accident. Many of us recommend controlling audience access to specific sites, and that’s the right way to go. But also want to highlight another, more important, and overlooked point. We don’t have active and passive ways to deal with weather conditions like snow.
Unfortunately, we see the same every year in different parts of our country during the rainy season. We always talk about any unfortunate event after it happens, and never work on the root cause and other methods needed before the event. Alas! We tested it over and over again. Likewise, with the snow that blankets our northern mountains every year and most winters, we lack proper proactive, efficient, and reactive methods, plans, guidelines, and procedures.
It is time for the Pakistani government to investigate the means and methods used by the outside world and put them into practice as soon as possible. If we won’t go into all the technical details about snow removal because it’s a comprehensive topic with very detailed protocols. However, there are some of the basic ideas that Pakistan needs right now.
As a matter of fact that we’re missing a lot of basics when it comes to handling snow on the road. Our road department needs to sit down with the meteorological department and collect all the historical data on snow, snow cover, fall months, and the extent of roads affected by snow in each season. Our northern regions need a dedicated de-icing unit, especially in areas of public interest and crowded tourist attractions. We need professional snow removal equipment and plows related to the size of the road. During the winter months, it should be stationed in strategic locations, along roads that have been cleared and are expected to snow.
In addition to equipment, authorities should also have sufficient stocks of simple unrefined rock salt/sodium chloride [abundant reserves in Pakistan]. Additionally, brine, which is a liquid solution of sodium chloride mixed in water, must be stored. Rock salt and brine are the primary de-icing and anti-icing products used worldwide. There are many other chemical salts, such as calcium, magnesium chloride, and even beet juice a raw material from the sugar industry that can be mixed with chloride salts to make effective deicers or antifreeze.
Let us now discuss these two methods in detail.
This means de-icers prepare themselves and the road by handling the road ahead of a snowstorm. This includes spraying anti-icing agents on roads before snowfall. Rock salt can also be sprinkled on the road with salt water before snowfall.
Antifreeze prevents snow and ice from sticking to the road. It helps lower the freezing point of snow as it falls on the surface, causing the snow to melt due to the higher ambient temperature. Snowplows are more likely to push snow off the road because of the reduced bond between the snow and the road.
This is a set of actions that start when snow falls. This means that these are actions taken by snow removal teams during snowfall. This includes vacuuming the snow frequently to keep it from accumulating on the road. Snow shovel speed largely depends on snowfall speed. In addition to continuing to remove snow, rock salt and brine are sprayed to melt the falling snow.
Melting helps melt the snow, making it softer and turning it into a liquid, while continuous tillage helps remove frost and snow from the road. Ordinary sand can sometimes be mixed with rock salt and sprinkled in order to provide traction to the vehicle. Since we are mostly exposed to snow in our mountains, the salt and sand mix is perfect for towing on turns, slopes, and slopes.
If you find Murree is very crowded and want to want the spend your holiday and enjoy the snowfall you can go some better alternatives of Murree, which are:
These alternative places can be visited within a day like many travelers who visit Murree for one day.
Murree Tragedy- Crucial Steps Needed To Avoid Any Mishap
Through the above method, a safer and more efficient traffic flow can be achieved while reducing the possibility of passengers being trapped in the snow. However, we are neither active nor passive in handling snow. We let the snow build up on the road, and we didn’t start the snow removal until the snow was over. This makes it slow and difficult and increases the risk of accidents during snowfall. A well-executed and implemented plan with the right teams, tools, and supplies can help enable both proactive and reactive action.
We thoroughly hope that the Pakistani government and authorities will investigate this and embark on a world-class snow removal program, especially after the recent unfortunate events. We must keep in mind that restricting vehicle access and allowing a fixed number of vehicles will significantly reduce the impact. However, for safer traffic flow, we need a dedicated unit that can operate before the snow starts and clear the road when it snows, even with only one driver on the road, because every life counts.