As Wednesday’s rain slowed down the city, Municipal Commissioner Swadheen Kshatriya pulled up all ward officers. He asked them to visit trouble spots to find the exact reason for flooding there. “They are also expected to say how the situation can be improved,” said Additional Municipal Commissioner Manisha Mhaiskar, in-charge of the Disaster Management Cell. The rain led to flooding in several low-lying areas and disrupted traffic as well as train schedules.
Train services hit
Suburban train services were delayed by 30 minutes. Nine trains were cancelled on the Western Railway (WR), while 18 were cancelled on the Central Railway (CR). WR services were further affected at 10.55 am when a tree fell on an overhead cable between Mahim and Matunga.
Train services were mainly hit due to poor visibility, because of which motormen couldn’t drive at the regular speed of 80 kmh. “Motormen usually drive at a cautious 30 kmh during heavy rain to avoid accidents. Due to this, trains get delayed,” said CR Chief PRO S. Mudgerikar.
Road traffic hit
Road traffic was disrupted for more than six hours. At many spots, traffic came to a grinding halt because of flooding.
Several buses were diverted, and many taxi and rickshaw drivers didn’t ply their vehicles fearing damage to them, said A. Quadros, general secretary, Mumbai Taxi Union.
Traffic was slow-moving at Parel, Dadar, Andheri, Hindmata and Suman Nagar Junction on the Eastern Express Highway and in western suburbs like Malad, Kandivli and Goregaon.
“Several cars and bikes were caught in the water. I was passing through Kurla and saw a few submerged vehicles. I took more than three hours to get from Prabhadevi to Kurla,” said Anand Bhatia, a financial consultant.
Several commuters complained about taxis and rickshaws not taking passengers if they didn’t pay more than the metered fare. “We didn't receive any complaints. If we do, we’ll surely take action,” said Tambi Kurian, general secretary, Mumbai Auto Union.
Rainfall and tides
A high tide of 4.70 metres was reported at 3.21 pm. Since June 1, 256.8 mm of rain has been recorded at Colaba, while 275 mm was recorded at Santacruz. Last year, till June 16, there had been no rainfall.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) issued landslide warnings near hillocks in Goregaon and along Goregaon-Mulund Link Road. They have asked people living near the hillocks to move to safer areas. The BMC said it would not be responsible in case of a calamity if the residents stayed put. The BMC also evacuated 31 dilapidated buildings and demolished three others.
With the strong winds, several trees fell across the city. SinceJune 9, 179 trees have been uprooted.