Torrential rain highlights need for separate radar in Pune
Forecast would be more accurate with more details coming from Mumbai radar which has been inactive since September 9
The city witnessed moderate rain on Saturday and while the rainfall was predicted well earlier, there was a lack of accuracy about its impact in the city.
An official from the India Meteorological Department (IMD) said the forecast would be more accurate with more details coming from Mumbai radar which has been inactive since September 9.
The heavy rain has therefore once again highlighted the need for a separate Radar in Pune.
Data from the Mumbai weather radar is crucial for providing advanced rainfall forecasts, especially the short-range forecast and rainfall impact on a local level.
Coastal areas in Maharashtra as well as some districts in western Maharashtra are covered by the Mumbai radar and the forecast is being given based on data received by radar, satellite images as well and the IMD models.
Since the Mumbai radar has not been active for the last two weeks there are difficulties in providing short-range as well as the local impact-based forecast.
KS Hosalikar, head, Climate Research Centre, IMD Pune, said, “The data from the radar is important and it’s used, especially in the nowcast for thunderstorms.”
“Pune is too prone to such thunderstorms, especially during the second half of September. However, the Mumbai radar has not been working for the last two weeks. Although high-resolution satellite observations do help in such cases, radar data would add more accuracy to the local forecast. The department is trying to get a suitable site for the radar that will be dedicated to Pune.
Vineet Kumar, former researcher at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology ( IITM), tweeted, “Mumbai radar has not been functional since September 9, so it is challenging to predict the exact coverage of rain clouds over Pune and when the rainfall subdued. The absence of radar had an impact on crores of the population from Mumbai Than, Pune, Nashik, and Kolhapur.
Meanwhile, it is not the first time that the Mumbai radar has become inactive. There is a long demand for upgradation of the radar network in Maharashtra.
Weather experts have expressed the need for expansion of the radar network in the Marathwada region too. The department is in the process of expanding the network.