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Lake Baikal still not frozen due to warm winter start

February 06, 2014, 21:50 UTC+3 ULAN-UDE
Russia’s Buryatia had unusual warm weather in December and early January as the Atlantic cyclones warmed up the air by about ten degrees over the average temperature
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© ITAR-TASS/Maxim Kashirin

ULAN-UDE, February 06, 21:42 /ITAR-TASS/. Lake Baikal in Russia’s eastern Siberia did not start freezing before February in the current winter season, experts of the regional department of the State Inspection of Small-Size Vessels of the Russian Emergencies Ministry (EMERCOM) have said.

A month’s delay was caused by the anomalous mild winter, the experts said adding that it affected the formation of solid ice cover on the lake. Environmentalists confirm the fact speaking about “a relatively warm winter and high winds in the area that got in the way of Baikal's being fully covered with ice.”

“By the beginning of February, the lake's ice would usually be strong enough to withstand trucks,” researchers from the united management of the Barguzinsky National Biosphere Nature Reserve and Transbaikal National Park said.

Thick ice on Baikal Lake is vitally important for local population, visitors and researchers -- for everyone traveling on the frozen surface.

“The latest checks in Chivyrkui Bay showed extreme inconsistence in thickness and structure of the ice which is posing danger for driving,” the researchers also said.

Russia’s republic of Buryatia had unusual warm weather in December and early January as the Atlantic cyclones warmed up the air by about ten degrees over the average temperature readings, the Buryatia met office said.

In mid-January the temperatures plummeted rather sharply and now reach -32 degrees Celsius.

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