Heavy to very heavy rains in Chennai has led to the deaths of three people on Thursday. Two women and a young man died due to electrocution following rains in the city, Minister for Revenue and Disaster Management, KKSSR Ramachandran said.
It was a repeat of scenes witnessed in Chennai last month as motorists struggled to manoeuvre their vehicles on flooded roads and subways while showers led to traffic congestion in the city and suburbs.
The intense spell may turn out to be one of the heaviest bouts of rainfall witnessed in recent years, while police said three subways in T Nagar, Egmore and Rajaji Salai were closed due to inundation. Traffic moved at a snail's pace in at least 14 arterial city roads.
The Greater Chennai Corporation said that over 145 pumps were used to de-clog inundated locations. Metrorail authorities extended train services by an hour from 11 PM onwards to help passengers reach their destinations safely. Starting from noon, most areas in the city and suburbs began receiving rainfall and it was heavy to very heavy in several locations
According to India Meterological Department (IMD), the highest rainfall of 21.4 CM was recorded in MRC Nagar. It was 14.8 CM at Meenambakkam as per IMD data at 5:30 am on December 31.
In other areas, including those falling under neighbouring Tiruvallur and Kancheepuram districts, the showers ranged from 1 CM (Madhavaram) to 10 CM (Nandanam) as per data from December 30.
Isolated heavy to very rainfall activity is likely to continue over north coastal Tamil Nadu and adjoining areas of south coastal Andhra Pradesh during next three days and decrease thereafter, the IMD said.
According to weather bloggers, Thursday's rains in Chennai was the heaviest for a single day in the month of December after 2015.
Regional Meteorological Centre, Chennai officials, however, did not confirm this and stated that a conclusion can only be arrived after looking into actual rainfall for the 24-hour period and following a scrutiny of previous data.
Weather blogger Pradeep John known as Tamil Nadu Weatherman tweeted, "Mylapore crosse 200 mm. One of the craziest spells of lifetime. Chennai City (Nungambakkam) beats 2015 annual rainfall." In another tweet, he said,"2015 annual rainfall is overtaken by 2021 & is the 3rd wettest year of all time behind 2005 & 1996." He had also given data for Chennai city (Nungambakkam) to support his claim.
Tamil Nadu witnessed heavy rainfall during the north east monsoon (October-December) and according to the weather office, presence of 'convective cells,' led to rainfall.