Uttarakhand Tragedy: What are glaciers and what causes their breakdown

The breakdown of glacier in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand resulted in heavy destruction in India. After about seven years, nature wreaked havoc in Uttarakhand once again. The glacier broke near Reni village in Chamoli. In the accident, the flow of water swept away over 150 people.When the glacier broke, all these people were working in the Rishi Ganga Power Project.

In this article, we will tell about glaciers and what happens when glaciers break. As the water level in Dhauli Ganga river increased, many bridges broke. This resulted in loss of contact with many villages. 

The glaciers are formed on the high peaks of the mountains due to heavy snow accumulation in one place for years. There are two types of glaciers-
Alpine
Ice sheets, the glaciers of the mountains are the Alpine glaciers.

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There are several reasons for why the glaciers break. The force of gravity is the major cause of glacier breakdown. Tension at the edges of glaciers is also a reason for breakdown. Glaciers also break due to global warming, the glacier ice starts melting rapidly, due to which the glacier starts to break. When a piece of the glacier breaks, it is called calving.

After the glacier breaks, the water in the drainage block within it finds its way and when it flows through the glacier, the ice also melts rapidly. Because of this, the road becomes very large and water swells. Due to the inundation of water, the water level of the rivers increases, due to which there is a lot of damage in the surrounding areas.

Small glaciers often break, but the big glacier breaks in two or three years time. Also, it is not possible to predict this in advance.