The India Meteorological Department issued a red alert for Mumbai for Wednesday as heavy rainfall lashed the city and its adjoining suburban areas, reported ANI. The southwest monsoon has arrived in the city two days early.
At 2.30 pm, the weather department said that the city and its suburbs were very likely to experience “moderate to intense” spells of rainfall over the next three to four hours.
Shubhangi Bhute, a scientist at the Mumbai branch of the weather agency, said that a yellow alert has been issued for India’s financial capital for the next four days. She added that yellow and red alerts have also been issued for some districts on the Konkan coastal strip.
A red alert is issued to ask district authorities to “take action”, while yellow alert asks them to “be aware”.
Colaba and Santacruz recorded 164.8 mm and 32.2 mm of rainfall, respectively, between 8.30 am and 2.30 pm on Wednesday, according to weather department data.
“Monsoon has arrived in Mumbai,” said Jayanta Sarkar, the deputy director general of India Meteorological Department in Mumbai, according to News18. “Normal arrival date is June 10 every year, so it has arrived prior to the average arrival date.” On Tuesday, the weather department had issued a warning of heavy downpour for Mumbai and adjoining areas from June 9 to June 13.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has issued a forecast that heavy to very heavy rainfall will continue throughout Wednesday at isolated places in the city, The Hindu reported.
After the heavy downpour, there were reports of waterlogging and traffic snarls. The Mumbai Police issued an advisory for commuters to avoid some areas due to waterlogging — Netaji Palkar Chowk, SV Road Baherambaug Junction, Sakkar Panchayat Chowk, Neelam Junction, Govandi, Hindamata Junction, Iqbal Kamani Junction, Dharavi Restaurant, Dharavi, Sion Junction and King Circle.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation said waterlogging was reported at several spots in the city as floodgates were closed due to a high tide of 4.14 meters at 11.43 am. The next high tide of 3.62 meters is expected at 11.23 pm.
Bus routes have been diverted in as many as 30 locations across the city.
With heavy rains leading to waterlogging, the traffic police shut down four subways – Milan, Khar, Andheri and Malad – for motorists, reported PTI. However, the traffic was moving smoothly on the SV Road, Linking Road and the Western Express Highway, Somnath Gharge, the deputy commissioner of police (Traffic) in the Western Suburbs, told PTI.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray visited the Disaster Management Cell of Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai to take stock of the situation. Thackeray directed the administration to ensure that the accumulated rainwater is drained out at the earliest and transport is resumed, reported India Today.
The chief minister also spoke to the control rooms in Mumbai and the district collectors of Ratnagiri, Thane, Raigad, Sindhudurg and Palghar as rains there led to the inundation of several areas
Local train services have been disrupted too due to water-logging on railway tracks, reported Hindustan Times. Authorities said train services between Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Terminus and Kurla railway stations on the central line have been suspended. On the harbour line, services between CSMT and Vashi were also put on hold since 10.20 am. Meanwhile, services on the main line were suspended between CSMT and Thane railway stations.
There was no disruption on the Western Railway route and train services were running normally, its chief spokesperson Sumit Thakur told PTI. Water pumps were being operated to clear flooded areas, he said, adding that drains and culverts were flowing smoothly.
Several social media users shared pictures and videos.