Salang Pass remains closed to traffic due to heavy snowfall and avalanches, said the head of Salang Pass protection department, Abdul Basir Habibi on Thursday.
The pass has been closed since Tuesday night and will remain closed until further notice due to ongoing snowstorms in the area.
“At least 20 avalanches have occurred along the Salang Pass in the past 24 hours and the clearing operation is very slow due to heavy snowfalls and the storm,” he said.
On Wednesday morning, he said that more than 70cms of snow hadfallen in the Salang Pass overnight.
Habibi said it’s not clear yet when the pass will reopen.
In the meantime, Herat officials said Wednesday that due to heavy rain and snow, flights into and out of Herat had been cancelled and the Herat-Islam Qala, Herat-Torghondi and Herat-Kandahar highways hadbeen closed.
According to officials hundreds of motorists and their passengers werestranded on the highways. Officials said government is doing everything it can to reopen the roads.
Extremely heavy rain, reportedly the most in over a decade, also caused floods in Herat city and some districts in the province.
Heavy snowfalls were also reported in the city Wednesday morning.
Abdul Hameed Mubariz, director of natural disaster management in West zone said that so far at least five people had died and seven others were injured due to floods in Herat province.
Three people died on the highways due to floods and two others died as a result of houses collapsing in the city, Mubariz added.