Meteorologists rule out repeat of 2005 Mumbai rains, but advise caution
The monsoon is expected to arrive over southern Maharashtra by Friday and over Mumbai by Saturday.Updated: Jun 07, 2018 21:29 IST
The ongoing spell of heavy pre-monsoon showers in Mumbai has raised fears of a repeat of the record-breaking showers that brought India’s financial capital to its knees in July 2005, when the city recorded 900 mm of rainfall in 24 hours.
However, meteorologists and experts said that the rainfall this time will be spread over 4-5 days and is likely to be less intense, covering a larger area.
“This time we expect 600-700 mm of rain over a few days,” Mahesh Palawat, of Skymet Weather, a private weather forecaster, said. “There is no need to panic, but there will be heavy rainfall so there is a need to plan accordingly and be prepared for water logging and flash floods.”
Earlier in the week, a tweet from Skymet Weather founder, Jatin Singh noting that “the period between June 6th and June 12, could be the worse spell since 26 July 2005, when Mumbai recorded 900mm in a day,” triggered alarm. The July 2015 rains wreaked havoc because there was a heavy continuous downpour for over 12 hours.
“This is normal for this time of the year,” KJ Ramesh, director general of the India Meterological Department, said. “The monsoon has only reached Goa, it has not made an onset over Mumbai.”
The monsoon is expected to arrive over southern Maharashtra by Friday and over Mumbai by Saturday. “Rainfall activity is likely to increase over coastal Karnataka, Goa and south Maharashtra, from today. The widespread rainfall activity is likely to continue till 10th June,” an IMD release on Thursday said.
In 2016, 315 mm rain was recorded in Mumbai in 24 hours. In recent years, the frequency of extreme rainfall events has increased in Mumbai and surrounding areas. The city witnesses 2-3 episodes of heavy rainfall episodes on average during the pre-monsoon and monsoon season. This is similar to what is happening across the world because of climate change, according to Palawat.