A low-pressure area crept in on Calcutta through the night and lashed the city on Monday, causing the season’s second heaviest rain in a day — just short of a century at 96.6mm.
The weatherman said heavy rain was likely on Tuesday too as the weather system has intensified, resulting in heavy moisture incursion from the bay.
As the low-pressure area inched closer to the coast over the weekend, the cloud build-up started in and around the city and the rainfall kicked off with a downpour at 8.15pm on Sunday.
According to the Met office, the low-pressure system intensified in the course of the day and was expected to grow further on Tuesday.
Several areas were inundated and rainwater entered homes at places like Kasba and Behala. But with the heaviest spells of rainfall occurring early in the day, the civic authorities got time to drain the water out of most streets before people hit the streets,
|Waterlogged EM Bypass near Science City and KK Roy Chowdhury Road in Behala on Monday afternoon.
Pictures by Bishwarup Dutta
Between 8pm on Sunday and 5pm on Monday, the highest rain of 158mm was recorded at Ballygunge, followed by 148mm at Jodhpur Park, 137mm at Topsia, 124.5mm at Dhapa, 118mm at Chetla and 110mm at Ultadanga.
In meteorological terms, anything above 64mm of rainfall a day is classified as “heavy rainfall”. If the rain gauge measures above 130mm, it is called “very heavy rainfall”. The highest rainfall this season was recorded on June 20 — 110.6mm.
August has traditionally been the second wettest month of the year, with an average aggregate rainfall of 352.4mm. Thanks to Monday’s rain score, August 2013’s aggregate has already shot up to 390mm with more than one-third of the month still left.
“The low-pressure zone developed over the northwestern Bay of Bengal and moved towards Bengal instead of Odisha, as happens most often at this time of the year. It had intensified into a well-marked low-pressure area and was likely to further intensify into a depression,” said Gokul Chandra Debnath, director, India Meteorological Department.
The weatherman added that the depression was likely to make landfall on the Bengal coast late on Monday and until it swerves the rate of cloud formation and rain would increase. “The amount of rainfall is likely to lessen from Wednesday afternoon,” Debnath added.
Like Monday, the sun is likely to stay behind the clouds for the next two days and the temperatures are likely to remain in check. Monday’s maximum temperature was 28.3 degrees Celsius, four degrees below normal and the coolest it has been since June, while the minimum temperature was 25.2 degrees Celsius, again a degree below normal.
If the dip in the Celsius brought relief, the incessant rain throughout the day inconvenienced several office-goers and students on the first day of the week.
Several pockets like Narayan Roy Road, KK Roy Chowdhury Road and Silpara Road in Behala, parts of Kasba and Picnic Garden, portions of the Park Circus connector near China Town were under water till Monday evening. Water also accumulated on a portion of the EM Bypass near Science City and on the service road in front of Fortis Hospital.
And then there were the craters. “I was driving slowly along the waterlogged stretch of EM Bypass when suddenly both the front wheels hit a crater camouflaged by the water. The front fender came off and fumes started coming out of the engine as we struggled to get the car out of the giant pothole,” said Rajesh Agarwal, who was driving a Chevrolet Beat to office.
Several homes in Kasba, Behala, Parnasree and Rabindranagar — the common waterlogging suspects — were flooded. “The entire ground floor of my house was under water from Monday night. At 3am, we shifted furniture to the first floor,” said Kallol Mukherjee, a resident of Narayan Roy Road in Behala.
A full-grown Krishnachura tree fell on a white Maruti Swift at the Red Road-Kidderpore Road crossing in front of Fort William around 7.10pm. A portion of the roof and the windscreen were smashed. Police said the hired driver behind the wheel had fled.