JAMMU: More than a day after an avalanche buried 10 Army personnel when it hit a high-altitude military post in Siachen Glacier, chances of finding any survivors were very remote even as rescue efforts were today scaled up with induction of specialised teams, sniffer dogs and equipment.
"Rescue teams are braving adverse weather and effects of rarified atmosphere to locate and rescue survivors. However, it is with deepest of regrets that we have to state that chances of finding any survivors are now very remote," Defence PRO(Northern Command) Col S D Goswami said in a statement.
The deadly avalanche hit the post situated at 19,600 feet in Northern Glacier sector in Ladakh region in the world's highest battlefield yesterday in which a JCO and nine jawans were trapped. The missing personnel were attached to Madras battalion stationed at the post, which is buried under tonnes of snow.
As the rescue operations by specialized teams of the Army and the Air Force entered the second day today, Col Goswami said specialised equipment was flown to Leh in the morning.
The glaciated area presents temperatures ranging from a minimum of minus 42 degrees Celsius in the night to maximum of minus 25 degrees C during the day, he said. He said that blocks of snow had fallen on the post, burying it very deep.
"To clear the same is a very difficult task", he said, adding that "building on yesterday's efforts, a very large rescue team has been deployed today to reach down till the post".
"The rescue operations have been intensified with induction of specialised teams and equipment to trace the missing Army men", the Defence PRO said.
Heavy snow cutters and special equipment are being used to clear and cut the ice blocks, as Army and IAF teams battle harsh weather conditions and difficult terrain to trace the missing soldiers.