Keylong (Lahaul Spiti): Two tourists died in the Manali-Leh National Highway since yesterday after their oxygen levels became dangerously low. Lahaul police received the information over phone and rushed to the spot.
The deceased have been identified as Aditya (32) of Haryana's Fatehabad district and Kabala Singh (48) of Sarika Vihar Lower Roop Nagar in Jammu. Aditya died in Pang near Sarchu on June 21 while Kabala died in Jingjingbar area today. Police have sent the bodies to Keylong Hospital for postmortem.
According to Lahaul police, people accompanying the deceased said that they suddenly started facing difficulties in breathing while walking and died of altitude sickness. Police have appealed tourists going on the Manali-Leh route to carry oxygen cylinders, oxygen tablets and medical kits as a precautionary measure. This apart, police have also asked tourists to carry drinking water to keep themselves hydrated.
Notably, the Lahaul Spiti district is located at a very high altitude and is covered with snow almost throughout the year. The Manali-Leh National Highway is the highest highway in the country, which passes through Lahaul-Spiti. There are many snowy passes between Manali and Leh which are situated at an altitude of more than 15,000 feet. Tourists visiting these areas often complain of low oxygen level.
Lahaul Spiti SP Mayank Chowdhary said that tourists must carry oxygen with them, especially the elderly and those having breathing problem and blood pressure. He said that Lahaul-Spiti is located at a very high altitude and oxygen level can decrease in many areas. In such a situation, the health condition of one who has breathing problem may deteriorate in absence of timely treatment, he said adding that earlier too a few tourists lost their lives due to lack of oxygen.
Moreover, as there is no network in many areas of the district, it becomes difficult to convey information and reach out for help, he said. Chowdhary has appealed tourists with respiratory problem not to travel beyond Darcha on Manali-Leh road and other spots located in the higher altitudes of the district.