Why weatherman is worried about hailstorm in Bengaluru

The city has been receiving hailstorms every other day for almost a week now. While the phenomenon has cheered up citizens, it’s got the weatherman worried. 

MG Road, Majestic, Manyata Tech Park and some other areas received the hailstorm on Friday afternoon. Just two days earlier, hailstorms were reported from Yelahanaka, Koramangala and Bannerghatta Road. Last Monday, Vijayanagar, Magadi Road, Banaswadi and Mysuru Road had received the hailstorm.

According to the weatherman, soaring and fluctuating temperatures in some pockets are leading to the formation of low-lying clumino-nimbus clouds at the local level, resulting in hailstorms. 

Although meteorological agencies sounded caution about the fall of hails, they are not in a position to forecast hailstorms. The city doesn’t have a radar to issue nowcasting, which refers to weather forecasting on a very short term mesoscale period of up to two hours. 

C S Patil, director-in-charge, India Meteorological Department (IMD), Bengaluru, attributed hailstorms to local convection activities. He said that despite the rainfall, the temperature was touching 34-35 degrees Celsius in many places, leading to hailstorms. The phenomenon will continue until the onset of monsoon, he added. 

G S Srinivas Reddy, Director, Karnataka State Disaster Natural Monitoring Centre (KSDNMC), said that hailstones, although common during the pre-monsoon season, were occurring in small pockets because of the creation of heat islands and other urban local factors. 

Hailstorms, Reddy explained, happen when the temperature suddenly drops and the clouds are shallow. The formation of clouds has been leading to a sudden change in the temperature in small pockets.

The temperature suddenly drops from 35 degrees Celsius to 28 degrees Celsius, bringing in hailstones, he said. 

The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) and the Karnataka State Disaster Management Authority are preparing to deal with hailstorm-related eventualities. 

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