SRINAGAR: Army’s Avalanche Rescue Teams (ARTs) on Saturday rescued an army patrol comprising five soldiers, which was trapped in snow after the track leading to their post caved-in in Machil sector along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir.
“An army patrol near an army camp in Machil sector got trapped in snow this morning after snow track caved in,” defence spokesman in Srinagar Colonel Rajesh Kalia told Express.
He said the army patrol comprised five men and all of them were trapped in the snow.
Colonel Kalia said army’s Avalanche Rescue Teams (ARTs) immediately launched the rescue operation to rescue the trapped soldiers.
He said the specially equipped ARTs continued the rescue work despite inclement weather and fresh snowfall.
“After intense efforts, the rescue teams successfully managed to rescue all the five trapped soldiers,” defence spokesman said.
The rescued soldiers, he said, have been hospitalised. “The soldiers are undergoing treatment”.
Sources said the army men were on routine patrol in the area when the snow track caved-in.
It was the 4th incident in last four days that army men have been a victim of snow avalanches and snow slides after record snowfall in the Valley.
Earlier, 14 soldiers were killed and seven others rescued when an army post and patrol party were hit by massive snow avalanches in Gurez, close to Line of Control (LoC) in North Kashmir’s Bandipora district on Wednesday.
An army major was also killed and seven others rescued when snow avalanche hit some barracks in the army camp in Sonamarg in central Kashmirs’ Ganderbal district on Wednesday.
Five civilians including four members of a family were also killed in two separate avalanches in Gurez and Uri in last four days.
Kashmir has witnessed record snowfall this winter. The plains including Srinagar and upper reaches including Keran, Karnah, Machil, Gurez, Tangdhar, Uri, Gulmarg, Sonamarg, Yousumarg, and Pahalgam received fresh snowfall today.
Due to heavy snowfall, Srinagar-Jammu national highway, the only road link connecting Kashmir with rest of the country remained closed for the fifth consecutive day today while only eight flights could take off from Srinagar airport today.
The air traffic resumed at Srinagar airport yesterday after remaining suspended for three days due to snowfall.
Due to the closure of Srinagar-Jammu national highway, the prices of essential commodities have shot up in Valley.
The Valley, which is totally dependent on the highway for supplies, is also facing a shortage of cooking gas due to the continued closure of the Srinagar-Jammu road.