Chennai: A day after the Northeast monsoon sets in over Tamilnadu, heavy rains battered Chennai city and suburbs, inundating arterial roads and several low lying areas today.
The rains, accompanied by thunder and lightning, which started in the wee hours, continued non-stop as several areas came under thick sheets of water.
Though Met office has predicted light to moderate rains for the first 2-3 days of monsoon, the sudden showers, which was heavier at times, took Chennaiites off guard as people of this teeming megapolis woke up to a typical monsoon day.
Deputy Director of Meteorology, Area Warning Centre S Balachandran attributed the rains to intense upper air circulation over the southwest Bay of Bengal off north Tamilnadu coast, which influenced intense thunderstorms accompanied by lightning. The moist northeasterly winds that penetrated the coastal areas too triggered rain.
Met office said the heavy rains were expected to continue for another couple of hours. For the first time since 2017, the city received heavy rains in a short span of time and the showers were expected to continue for the next couple of days.
While the Nungambakkam observatory in the city registered more than 13 cm of rains during the last six hours ending at 8.30 am this morning, the suburban
Meenambakkam observatory received 5.78 cm of rains.
Office-goers were put to great hardship as several areas were water-logged. Adding to the woes was felling of trees in some places, following which civic workers swung into action to clear them and also to pump out the stagnated water.
In some areas vehicles waded through knee-deep water. The rains were so heavy that some of the bus depots, including the T Nagar depot was inundated.
Areas like Anna Nagar, T Nagar, Ekkattuthangal, Velachery, Egmore, Mylapore, Triplicane and Royapettah were pounded by relentless heavy rains since early morning.
The Met office has issued yellow alert for Chennai city for the next two days, predicting rains ranging from seven to 11 cms. Other weather stations like DGP office at Mylapore area in the city received a whopping 18 cm of rain, followed by the Anna University (14 cm), Chennai North (13 cm), Red Hills (13 cm), suburban Ambattur (9), the southern Tuticorin district (11), Rameswaram (10), the Northern suburb of Ennore (8 cm).
Several southern districts, including Virudhunagar, Tirunelveli also received good rains. The heavy rains brought smiles on the faces of water managers as several reservoirs, including Poondi and Red Hills, which were the main sources of drinking water for the city, got copious inflows.