Estimated Loss Due to Torrential Rain Rs 20 Crore, Situation Normal – DC Senthil
Mangaluru: “According to weather forecasts, the monsoon was predicted from June 1st. We have been preparing for the monsoon since last month and had kept the entire team on stand-by. But the onset of monsoon began earlier than expected on May 28 late night, and it converted to a low-pressure system. We did not get the time to give out warnings. In the monsoon season, low pressure is normal and we generally get 150 mm of rain. In Mangaluru, we have faced such situations and there was no major concern about it. But very strangely that low pressure had entirely precipitated. On May 28 night, precipitation occurred throughout the taluks of Mangaluru and Udupi within a short period of time causing 368 mm of rainfall in six hours in these places,” said Deputy Commissioner Sasikanth Senthil in a press meet held at his office here on May 30.
Addressing the mediapersons, DC Senthil said that since there was a high tide during the same time as the rains, the major storm water drains that open to the Gurupur and Netravati systems had reverse flow. “Both the drains were facing high tide conditions. When there is a high tide, backwater from the river flows into the canals of the city. Due to this, it was not possible to drain the rainwater, causing water stagnation throughout the areas in the city. Once we found that the water had been stagnated, we immediately deployed all the teams and took necessary measures. A control room was established and was used to monitor the entire district since there was heavy rainfall in the district. We were prepared for the monsoon and immediately responded to the situation. We were well aware that after 6 pm, the situation would settle down since there would be a low tide and the water would recede. Everything returned to normalcy with no more rains or signs of a cyclone,” said the DC adding that a holiday was immediately announced for schools and colleges. The rains caused damage to property and resulted in the loss of two lives – Mohini, who was buried under a retaining wall and Mukta Bai, who toppled from the bed and died.
The DC further said that a team had been formed and it was headed by a nodal officer to monitor the situation throughout the night. Preliminary assessment and categorization was already conducted for the public and private property. According to the estimates, the rains caused Rs 16 crores of financial loss in infrastructure damages and Rs 4.11 crore for house damages. The total estimated loss is nearly Rs 20 crores.
“We are giving ex gratia when such incidents occur. Today, we have handed over two cheques to two families. In the district, 35 houses were fully damaged, 42 houses were severely damaged and 483 houses had marginal damages. We will hand over the relief according to NDRF norms. There is no need to panic. For safety purposes, we have summoned an NDRF team and they have been stationed in Mangaluru. Life has become normal in Mangaluru and we do not have any prediction of bad weather. Certain roads and pathways will have to restored and will be done in a day or two. In three areas, we need to get rid of stagnated water. I have visited some places and have inspected them. I have noticed that in certain areas, corrections are required,” DC added.
DC further said that he has formed a committee headed by the MUDA commissioner, consisting of a team of engineers and a team of other domain experts to inspect all the major stormwater drains. The team has been given three days to check the water drains, from Kottara Chowki to Gurupur system and Jeppu to Netravati system. “If there is any encroachment along these areas, they will be reported. In three days, we will receive the report and intervene accordingly. If there is any bottleneck or encroachment, they will be removed immediately,” warned DC Senthil.
ADC Vaishali and DHO Dr Ramakrishna were also present.