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Snow once again closes Salang Pass

Snow once again closes Salang Pass

Feb 06, 2014 - 15:41

CHARIKAR (Pajhwok): Snowstorms and avalanches once again blocked the Salang Pass on Thursday, leaving a large number of vehicles stranded on both sides of the 12,000-foot tunnel that connects Kabul with nine provinces in the north.

The two kilometres Russian-built tunnel was blocked early in the morning when half a dozen avalanches rolled down the mountains and buried the highway, the only passable route for heavy traffic between central and northern provinces.

In charge of the tunnel’s maintenance, Gen. Abdul Rajab, told Pajhwok Afghan News there were no casualties, but the avalanches left a large number of cars, buses and trucks stranded on both sides.

He said the ongoing snowfall that began on Wednesday night triggered more avalanches. The route at the top of the Hindu Kush range reopened for traffic a day earlier after a three-day closure.

Journey on this route in the winter often leads to deadly incidents as a result of avalanches. The most horrific incident occurred on Feb. 8, 2010 when 170 people were killed after being trapped in fierce snowstorms and avalanches in southern Salang.