Waterlogging at Parel station.
Waterlogging at Parel station.
Bhushan Koyande

The heavy spells of rains on Tuesday and Wednesday threw Mumbai traffic and ‘new normal’ life out of gear amid the pandemic fear. The city received the fourth highest rainfall in September since 1974. Hundreds of people were inconvenienced on Wednesday as public transport took a major hit with waterlogged streets, traffic snarls and landslides in several parts of Mumbai and neighbouring areas.

Both rail and road movement were severely hit due to waterlogged streets and submerged rail tracks at several places. The city along with Thane and Palghar district saw extremely heavy rains and waterlogging since Tuesday night. The state government kept five NDRF teams on standby mode to tackle flood-like situations.

"Mumbai received one of the highest rainfalls in the last 24 hours,” Deputy Director-General of India Meteorological Department's (IMD) western region K S Hosalikar said.

Multiple weather systems are responsible for heavy downpour over Mumbai and suburbs. A cyclonic circulation is persisting over the north coast of Maharashtra, the east-west shear zone is also running in the close proximity of Mumbai, said private weather agency, Skymet.

Rains across the island city and the western suburbs picked up late on Tuesday evening. There were intense spells across Mumbai for a few hours overnight, an official said. The Santacruz observatory (in western suburbs) received 286.4 mm showers during the 24-hour period ending at 8.30 am on Wednesday, which is the fourth-highest rainfall in the Maharashtra capital's history, an MD official said. Meanwhile, the Colaba observatory recorded 147.8 mm rainfall during the same period.

As per IMD Mumbai's record of Santacruz observatory since 1974, it reported 318.2 mm rainfall in 24 hours on September 23, 1981, 312.4 mm rainfall on September 23, 1993, and 303.7 mm rainfall on September 20, 2017."Today's rainfall of 286.4 mm is the fourth highest between 1974 and 2020," the official said.

According to the IMD, rainfall recorded below 15 mm is considered light, between 15 and 64.5 mm is moderate and above 64.5 mm is heavy. Several parts of Mumbai received more than 120 mm rainfall in the last 24 hours, the IMD bulletin said. The Ram Mandir area (near Jogeshwari) received 298 mm rainfall, while Dahisar received 190 mm rainfall during the period. "Most of the rainfall in Mumbai was received after late Tuesday night," the official said.

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