Schools closed, traffic disrupted amid raging rain in Tamil Nadu


Residents of Chennai are once again struggling with waterlogging and flooding after relentless rains. Many roads and subways were closed to traffic, even as excess water continued to be released from reservoirs.

Traffic diversions were imposed in many places and barricades were erected to warn road users. Although there have been disruptions in state-run local bus services, commuter rail services have not been hampered. Vehicles, mainly two-wheelers, were found stranded on several roads covered with water.

Reservoirs, including Poondi and Chembarambakkam here, which meet Chennai’s drinking water needs, have released more than 10,500 cusecs of excess water due to continued downpours in catchment areas, authorities said.

The release of the surplus from the Poondi dam in Tiruvallur district has been accelerated (from an initial level of 4,253 cusecs to around 8,000 cusecs) gradually to around 12,000 cusecs in the evening.
Towards rescue, relief and mitigation initiatives, up to 54 inflatable boats have been deployed, in addition to heavy-duty excavators and pumps in areas of Chennai Corporation, according to an official statement, adding that police have transferred people from the flooded suburb of Perumbakkam-Ezhil Nagar to a relief center. .

Of the 464 areas that experienced water stagnation, floodwaters were evacuated from 86 localities and work was in full swing in other areas, authorities said, adding that fallen trees had also been felled. and that efforts were being made to restore traffic to the affected areas.

Rainwater entered several houses in the low-lying suburban areas off Urapakkam and Guduvancherry and the electrical connection was cut in those places.

Using inflatable boats, people were rescued from the flooded suburban communities of Pallikaranai and Varadharajapuram by police and National Disaster Response Force personnel respectively.

According to reports on NDTV, schools in Chennai and six other districts have been asked to remain closed.

The roads and lanes of the city and suburbs were overflowing with flood water, while the subways were closed to traffic.

Waterlogging of up to a foot was observed in most places and road sides, including the GST Road artery, while water stagnation was around two feet in parts of areas like Madipakkam and over two feet in places that fall under suburbs like Peerkankaranai.

Flood waters have brought insects and tadpoles into homes and the vacant plots are serving as breeding grounds, some residents said.

On Sunday, the city of Chennai and the suburbs that fall under the districts of Chengelpet, Kancheepuram and Tiruvallur experienced heavy rains.

Chennai police said 2,181 people living in low-lying and flooded areas had been evacuated and accommodated in 31 temporary relief centers.

From October 1 to November 28, Chennai received rainfall of 109.76 CM while 61.16 CM is normal, an excess of 79 percent, according to the report from the Regional Meteorological Center.

For assistance, people can call the toll-free 24×7 number 1070 (state level control room in Chennai) or 1077, the number for control centers in the districts. In addition, residents of the Greater Chennai Corporation area can call 1913 to register complaints.

(with PTI inputs)

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