Heavy rainfall, the first since the onset of southwest monsoon on June 14, left several parts of Mumbai and its suburbs inundated on Friday.
Between 8.30 am and 5.30 pm, the Colaba weather observatory recorded 160.6 mm of rain of which 157 mm of rainfall was recorded in the first three hours. The intensity of the rainfall in south and central Mumbai, however, reduced after 12.30 pm.
The Santacruz weather observatory, representative of Mumbai’s suburbs, recorded 61 mm rain in the first three-hour period Friday morning. Between 8.30 am and 5.30 pm, it recorded extremely heavy rain at 102.7 mm.
Following the very intense spell in the morning, at least 38 locations in the city witnessed waterlogging, leading to traffic snarls and diversion, especially in Andheri and Sion. The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) also received complaints of waterlogging from Bhulabhai Desai Road in Breach Candy, Worli Naka, Hindmata, Dhobi Ghat in Cuffe Parade, near Byculla police station and Chira Bazaar in Marine Lines. Three wall collapses, 24 tree-falls, nine short-circuits and one landslide incident were also reported in the morning.
Buses on at least four routes through Gol Deval and several limited routes on Hindmata, Gandhi Market and Sion roads were diverted due to waterlogging. BEST public relation officer Manoj Varade said, “These bus routes were, however, restored in the evening after the water receded.”
Waterlogging was also reported on Sandhurst Road near CSMT on Central Railway, and Mahim and Mumbai Central on Western Railway. Chief PRO of CR, Shivaji Sutar, however, said there was “no impact on suburban train operations”.
Meanwhile, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has issued a red alert (take action) for Mumbai, Thane, Palghar and Raigad with forecast of extremely heavy rain very likely at isolated places on Saturday. According to the weather bureau, the rainfall activity over the city will reduce from Sunday.
IMD classifies rainfall intensity as 20-30 mm rain per hour as an intense spell; 30-50 mm per hour as a very intense spell; 50-100 mm per hour as an extremely intense spell; and over 100 mm per hour as a cloud burst. Friday’s showers in south Mumbai was in the “very intense spell” category, officials said.
According to the location-wise rainfall data, three areas in the island city recorded ‘extremely intense spells’. Between 9 and 10 am, 72.14 mm of rain was recorded at Colaba pumping station, followed by Colaba Fire station at 68. 83 mm and Nariman Point fire station at 59.18 mm.
“Radar and satellite images are indicating active monsoon conditions over the west coast, including Mumbai. Heavy incessant rain for the next 48 hours has been forecast for the entire Konkan coast, including Mumbai,” said K S Hosalikar, deputy director general, IMD Mumbai.
Subsequent to the IMD’s impact-based forecast for heavy rain over Mumbai on Saturday, the weather bureau has warned of waterlogging in several low-lying areas of the city, temporary disruption of civic services, such as water and electricity, traffic snarls, the likelihood of collapse of old buildings, possibility of localised landslides in elevated areas and uprooting of trees. IMD has urged proper regulation of city traffic and restricted movement of people in these areas.
“High convergence of strong moist westerly/ south-westerly winds at a low tropospheric level from the Arabian sea is very likely along the west coast till July 5. An offshore trough runs from north Maharashtra coast to Karnataka coast. Under the influence of these systems, active rain spells are likely along the west coast, and the interior of Maharashtra,” an IMD bulletin reads.
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