After floods triggered by cyclone Michaung inundated the roads and streets in Chennai on Monday, December 3, most commuters were forced to rely on the metro, the only operative mode of transport in the city. People who need to reach key transportation hubs such as the Koyambedu bus stand or other railway stations, find themselves relying solely on the metro lines, amidst disorder and confusion.
Speaking to TNM’s Shabbir Ahmed, a female passenger stuck at the Chennai Central metro station along with others said, “There is only one way to reach the Koyambedu bus stand, which is via the metro because that is the only transportation that is available now. We came here from Kerala for an interview, and now with trains cancelled, we have booked a bus from Koyambedu.” Many like her are trying to find their way to the Koyambedu bus stand, which is the main stand and the only operational bus depot from where further road transport can be accessed. Several residents have also raised the complaint that taxis and autos are charging exorbitant amounts of money for commuting.
Meanwhile, at the Chennai Central Railway Station, there are long queues of people stranded after trains were cancelled. Hundreds are left clueless, braving hunger and thirst, hoping for some solution to open up.
Local residents and volunteers from the Jains Friends Community have been serving food for the stranded passengers, as well as across hospitals and other spots in the city. “We started at 7.30 in the morning and we hope to go on till 6 pm. People are hungry and they are in need. If the rains continue, we will try and extend our services tomorrow also,” a volunteer told TNM.
Meanwhile, the Chennai Metro Rail also released an update at 4 pm on Monday, December 4, saying that while access to the St Thomas Mount metro station has been blocked due to waterlogging of up to four feet, passengers are advised to board trains at Alandur. The other instructions from the metro department are as follows:
> The road in front of the Koyembedu metro station is flooded. The station is accessible by foot over the bridge from the Rohini Theatre side.
> There is water overflow into roads near Arumbakkam station due to which there may be some difficulty in accessing Arumbakkam Metro station.
> Wallajah Road Subway side Entry to Government Estate Metro Station is closed. Passengers may use other entries to reach the Government Estate Metro Station.
> Other stations are accessible, with only minor water logging at the street level.
> Trains services have commenced normally at 5 am.
“Team CMRL is working hard to provide the best services to its passengers and deeply regrets the inconvenience to its passengers caused due to reasons beyond its control. Next update will be issued if there is any further development,” the department added.
The route map for metro stations can be accessed here.
Watch: Chennai Rains: Public transport hit, passengers take to Chennai Metro
Several parts of Chennai received more than 20 cm rainfall in the last 24 hours after being hit by Cyclone Michaung. As of 12:30 pm on December 4, Cyclone Michaung has intensified as a severe cyclonic storm and is 90 km northeast of the Chennai coast. It is expected to move along north Tamil Nadu and south Andhra Pradesh before making landfall between Nellore and Machilipatnam at 11.30 am on December 5.
Verified helpline numbers:
Chennai corporation (tree fall/waterlogging) -1913
Electricity - 94987 94987
Metro water and sewage - 044 4567 or 1916
Snake rescue - 044 2220 0335
LPG gas leakage - 1906
Chennai metro rail - 1860425 1515
Blue cross (animal rescue) - bit.ly/bluecross-help
Chennai Cares (on X) - @ChennaiCares
Ambulance - 108
Police - 100
Traffic police - 103
Childline - 1098
Women’s helpline -181