Severe rainfall and thunderstorms wreak a havoc in Mumbai, leaving major parts of the city waterlogged throwing normal life out of gear. The relentless rainfall led the traffic to crawl at many places as the Mumbaikars struggled past the waterlogged streets to reach their destinations.
From 8:30 am on Sunday to 8:30 am on Monday, the city received an average rainfall of 59.6 mm. The Colaba weather station recorded the highest 24 hour rainfall of 152mm. in a year. The city’s rail services have been severely hit by the rains as all the trains on the suburban railway tracks is submerged in water and the Central Railway services along the GTB Nagar, Sion and Kurla has been called off.
Various regions of the north Konkan also received heavy rains with Alibaug recording a maximum rainfall of 161mm. and Navi Mumbai recording a rainfall of 119.85 mm.
Almost all the trains from the western lines have been shut off till Andheri and are running late due to the inclement weather. The Suburban railway line is the life line of the city as it carries 70 lakhs passengers every day and will definitely affect the passengers if the rains continue till the evening, which is the peak time to commute.
According to KS Hosalikar, Deputy Director General of the Indian Metereological Department, “A low-pressure area that had developed over Odisha has shifted westwards towards the central parts of the country. There is an upper air cyclonic circulation over the eastern part of the state and a trough that extends over the west coast. All these factors have led to very heavy rain over the Konkan coast, especially Mumbai,”.
Due to the unprecedented circumstances the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has warned people to be cautious and stay indoors over the next 24 hours as a combination of high tides and heavy rains can flood the low lying areas of the city causing further obstruction. Keeping in perspective the present rain clogged areas of the city the Mumbai police has issued traffic diversions across the major arterial routes of the city mainly the Worli sea face and Haji Ali stretch in South Mumbai, which hold the risk of big waves crashing on the road from the seaside.
Media footage has been constantly covering people wading through the waterlogged streets of the city and traffic crawling through the neck deep water, stifling the city’s archaic drainage system. The incessant rains have also robbed the charm of the popular Ganesh Utsav celebrations that began on 25th August.
Heavy rains even prompted the schools for early pick up and shut down in many areas where school buses cannot ply. The flight operations at the Chhatrapati Shivaji international airport also felt the jilt due to the downpour, with an average delay of around 35 minutes for each flight.
“Pilots are aware of the city’s weather and hence have taken off with sufficient fuel due to which they are asked to go-around without any such concern. In case of a diversion, flights are preferred to land in the closest airports either in Ahmadabad or Vadodara,” an airport official said.
The amount of rains recorded in Mumbai over the last 24 hours is the highest since July 26th 2006 deluge which recorded a rainfall of 944 mm killing thousands of people.