Heavy rains and floods in several parts of India claimed 850 lives in 2019, the Indian Meteorological Departmentâ€™s statement on climate in India in 2019 states. The year 2019 was the seventh warmest year since 1901, and the average temperature in India was around 0.36 degrees above average.
The annual rainfall over the country was 109% of its long-period average. Here, the long-period average (LPA) is the average of the amount of rainfall received over a 50-year period, between 1961 and 2010. In 2019, while rainfall between June and September over the country as a whole was 110% of its LPA, the seasonal rainfall during the North-East monsoon season (October to December) over the NE Monsoon core region of the southern peninsula was 109% of its LPA.
During 2019, eight cyclonic storms formed over Indian seas. The Arabian Sea contributed five out of these eight cyclones against the normal of one per year. This year also witnessed the development of more intense cyclones over the Arabian Sea.
Heavy rain and flood-related incidents reportedly claimed over 850 lives from different parts of the country during the pre-monsoon, monsoon, and post-monsoon seasons. Of these, 306 deaths were reported from Bihar alone, 136 from Maharashtra, 107 from Uttar Pradesh, 88 from Kerala, 80 from Rajasthan, and 43 from Karnataka.
Heatwave conditions that prevailed over the northeastern and central parts of the country during the period of March to June claimed about 350 lives. Of these, 293 deaths were reported from the worst affected state of Bihar alone during June, and 44 deaths were reported from Maharashtra.
Lightning and thunderstorm reportedly claimed over 380 lives from central, northeastern, northwestern, and peninsular parts of the country during pre-monsoon, monsoon, and post-monsoon seasons. Of these, 125 deaths were reported from Jharkhand, 73 from Bihar, 51 from Maharashtra, and 24 each from Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan.
The country also experienced other high impact weather events like extremely heavy rainfall, heat and cold waves, snowfall, thunderstorm, dust storm, lightning, floods, etc. Bihar was the most adversely affected state in 2019, reporting around 650 deaths due to heavy rain and floods, heat wave, lightning, thunderstorm, and hailstorm.