Chennai gets welcome break from rain, but weatherman predicts more in coming days
The rain, which began on Monday morning, has caused a single death due to wall collapse in Chennai so far. Two youngsters were also fatally struck by lightning in suburban Ankaputhur.tamil nadu Updated: Oct 31, 2017 21:03 IST
The northeast monsoon eased up over Chennai and coastal areas of Tamil Nadu around noon on Tuesday, providing respite to residents overwhelmed by near-continuous rainfall over the last 24 hours.
The worst, however, is far from over. Schools and colleges remained shut in Chennai and adjoining districts of Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur, and the Met office has predicted heavy to very heavy rainfall for the next three days. Several low-lying areas continued to be waterlogged, forcing people to wade through waist-deep water. Traffic snarls were also reported at regions inundated after last night’s downpour.
The rain, which began on Monday morning, has caused a single death due to wall collapse in Chennai so far. Two youngsters were also fatally struck by lightning in suburban Ankaputhur.
“More heavy rainfall is predicted for today,” said S Balachander, director of the Area Cyclone Warning Centre at the Regional Meteorological Centre, Chennai. The Met office recorded 193 mm rain at Nungambakkam and 184 mm rain at Meenambakkam Airport on Tuesday morning.
Water-logging of up to two feet was reported from Chembakkam, in the vicinity of Tambaram. Two-wheelers were also submerged, making it difficult for riders to negotiate the roads.
Rain water flooded subways at Vyasarpadi in North Chennai, making it difficult for commuters to reach the local railway station. The areas that witnessed heavy water-logging included Anna Nagar, Vadapalani, West Mambalam, T Nagar, Ashok Nagar junction, Nandanam, Mogappair, Ambattur, Perambur, Mudichur and Perangalathur.
State fisheries minister D Jayakumar allayed fears of a repeat of the 2015 floods, assuring people that the government was well-prepared this time. “We can handle the situation, much like foreign countries do. We are prepared,” he told mediapersons.
Chennai municipal corporation commissioner D Kartikeyan said Chennai was prepared to face any flood-like situation. “We had cleared storm water drains and identified chronic water stagnation points. As many as 400 suction pumps are being employed to empty water-logged areas,” he said.
On the bright side, the weather situation has addressed Chennai’s water shortage concerns to a large extent. The rain is filling up catchment areas of Chennai’s reservoirs – Poondi lake, Cholavaram lake, Redhills lake and Chembarapakkam lake – which provide drinking water to the city. Public Works Department officials said Chembarpakkam lake and Puzhal lake have filled up to 20% and 25% respectively.