In what seems to be a sign of good rainfall for the city, this year, Mumbai witnessed the highest total rainfall received in the month of July in the past 55 years.
According to India Meteorological Department (IMD) rainfall figures since 1959, Santacruz received 1547.5 mm rainfall in the month of July, breaking the previous highest total rainfall measured in the month of July, at 1455.5 mm, which was recorded at Santacruz in 1965. Similarly, Colaba this year, recorded a total July rainfall of 1401.7 mm, second to the highest July total rainfall (1441.3 mm in 1974).
On Thursday, the IMD recorded 80.4 mm at Santacruz, and 48.3 mm at Colaba. IMD officials have forecast heavy (70-120mm) to very heavy (120-240mm) rainfall at isolated places over the city during next 48 hours.
“The offshore trough over Arabian sea is more intense and is pushing up the rains, especially over north Konkan and south of Gujarat,” said K S Hosalikar, deputy director-general of meteorology, IMD Mumbai.
Meanwhile, in the Konkan region, IMD has forecast that heavy rainfall would occur at a few places with extremely heavy (more than 240mm) at isolated places in districts of Thane, Raigad, Ratnagiri and Sindhudurg during the next 24 hours.
Dismissing ‘cloudburst aler’s’ as rumours, Hosalikar said that generally, cloudburst do not occur in coastal regions, but in hilly regions.
On account of the unrelenting downpour, many parts of Mumbai remained submerged through Thursday. According to civic data, citizens registered water-logging complaints only in Nariman Point, Parel, Ghatkopar (west), and Andheri.
Heavy rain also led to five instances of minor ceiling, wall and slab collapses in various parts of Mumbai. No injuries were reported in these collapses which were recorded in the areas of Bhendi Bazaar, Ghatkopar, Vakola, Khar, and Bhandup.
High velocity winds and rain also led to 23 tree-falling incidents, nine of which took place in the western suburbs. Four short-circuit incidents were also reported.
Till Thursday evening, close to 4000 potholes were reported on the civic pothole-tracking website, http://www.voiceofcitizen.com. Of these, about 1000 potholes remain unattended to.
Apart from causing a landslide that claimed one life, a 17-year-old boy, Rafique Shah, has also drowned off the city coast near Versova beach, Yari Road. On Thursday evening, after a seven-hour search operation, the Mumbai Fire Brigade wound up its efforts to retrieve the boy’s body from the sea.
Fire officials said, Shah was playing at the beach with two friends on Thursday afternoon when he was pulled in by a huge tidal wave.
Though the other two boys managed to swim across, Shah drowned. The civic body on Thursday had warned of a high tide measuring up to 4.13 meters in the afternoon” “Though the lifeguards were present at the spot, the incident happened in seconds. We had rushed a fire engine and an ambulance to the spot but failed to recover the body even after a seven-hour operation,” a fire official said.
On the bright side, owing to heavy rain in the catchment areas, levels of usable water content in the seven lakes that supply water to the city rose by over 1.2 lakh million litres to now stand at 8.03 lakh million litres. The level rise calculates to an increase of over a month of water supply for Mumbai.