Delhi gets highest rain since 2013, waterlogging brings traffic to a crawl
Delhi received 26.4mm of rain in the past 24 hours which was the highest in 24 hours since 2013. MeT officials say expect more showers over the next two days. Gurgaon received 10mm rain and traffic police personnel maned junctions to regulate traffic.Updated: Jun 20, 2017 11:35 IST
In the past 24 hours Delhi has received the highest rainfall on a single day in June since 2013. Heavy rains brought temperatures to a pleasant 23 degree Celsius but also led to massive traffic on stretches across the national capital region on Tuesday.
“Delhi has received around 26.4mm of rain in the past 24 hours (from 8.30am on Monday to 8.30am on Tuesday). This is the highest rain on a single day in June since 2013. The last time it rained so heavily was on June 19, 2013. It rained 58.5mm,” said a senior official of the regional weather forecasting department.
Since June 1 this year the city has so far received around 81.8mm of rain. This is also the highest so far in June since 2013. In June 2013 the city received around 119.5mm of rain.
“With more rains expected over the next two days we hope that it would break this earlier record,” said an official.
Headache for commuters
Traffic was thrown out of gear on stretches across the capital as water logged and auto rickshaws broke down leading to slow movement of vehicles. Many motorists got stuck in traffic jams for over an hour, while the ones trying to book a cab had a hard time as the prices were surged to almost two times.
“The rains are definitely a relief but only for the people sitting at home. I had an important meeting today and I left from home an hour in advance as I knew I will get traffic but still I got stuck for over an hour. Two auto rickshaws had broken down on the way and that had slowed down t he entire traffic. Apart from that the roads were flooded. Why can’t the government work on a proper drainage plan. Why do we have to face this each monsoon?” Harleen Kaur, who goes to Gurgaon from Tagore Garden said.
Some commuters did not seem to mind the hassle. “Delhites should get used to this. If there is rain, there will be traffic, so why crib? Just role down the windows and enjoy the weather,” Nishi Sharma, a resident of East of Kailash said.
Among the worst hit areas were Chirag Delhi, Khanpur, Sainik Farms, Ashram, Moti Bagh, Shahdara Vikas Marg , Vasant Kunj, Moolchand, Hero Honda Chowk and the strecth from Manesar to Rajiv Chowk. In west and north Delhi areas incuding Mayapuri, Naraina, Punjabi Bagh, Boulevard Road, Wazirabad, Jahangirpuri and Adarsh Nagar were the worst affected.
Rains triggered by a western disturbance lashed Delhi since the wee hours of Monday which in turn helped to bring down the mercury level. After a brief gap in the evening, heavy rains lashed the city again since late Monday night. Met officials have predicted more showers over the next few days.
“A few western disturbances are expected to hit the north western states over the next few days. These systems are likely to trigger more rains at least till Thursday,” said a senior official of the regional weather forecasting centre.
The highest rainfall that Delhi has ever experienced on a single day in the month of June was in 1936. The city received around 235mm of rain on June 28, 1936.
“Pre-monsoon rain and thundershowers will help to keep the mercury levels in check. The maximum temperature is likely to plummet to around 31 degrees Celsius by Thursday,” said the official.
The mercury had hit 44.6 degrees Celsius earlier this month on June 4.
Met officials are also hopeful that once the western disturbances arrive, they would induce favourable conditions for the monsoon to advance further towards Delhi.
Sometimes the monsoon current is strong enough and advances on its own. But at times it needs some push to advance over the Indian landmass. Certain atmospheric conditions such as a cyclonic circulation, a low pressure or a depression in the sea provide this push.
“We are hopeful that the western disturbances, which are arriving early next week and the prevailing cyclonic circulations over north-west India, would pave the way for the monsoon to advance further towards Delhi,” said a senior met official.
Situation better in Gurgaon, but expect more rains
Heavy rains caused waterlogging at several locations in Gurgaon, including Rajiv Chowk, Jharsa, Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway and Sohna Chowk. However, the traffic situation was better than last week as the traffic police had been deployed to ensure smooth functioning.
According to the MeT department, the city received 10mm of rain on Tuesday till 9am, which is likely to increase in the next 24 hours.
On Tuesday, commuters had to wait for over 30 minutes to cross over to the other side of the road near Iffco Chowk and Maharana Partap Chowk as the construction work around the area slowed traffic movement.
Major traffic jam was witnessed around MG Road, Huda City Centre, Atul Kataria road, Signature Town and in several sector roads during the morning rush hours.
“Because of heavy rain, the traffic was slow at rush hour and the travel time increased. Traffic was also slow on Delhi-Gurgaon Expressway,” said Sangeeta Gupta, a commuter.
On Friday, the traffic situation was very poor as the city received 21mm of rainfall and all major junctions saw traffic jams. It took more than three hours for the traffic police to bring the situation under control. People also took to social media to express concern as several roads were inundated in the rainwater. To resolve the problem, Gurgaon police had marked 23 spots where more force would be deployed to manage traffic.
(Inputs from Ananya Bhardwaj and Ipsita Pati)
First Published: Jun 20, 2017 11:07 IST