Rain wreaks havoc in city

Last Updated 30 March 2018, 19:04 IST

Sudden hail storms, squalls and thunder showers hit the city on Friday afternoon, uprooting many trees. There was also a minor disruption of flights due to strong winds.

At least 20 trees were uprooted and 13 electric poles were damaged. The rain brought down the temperature bringing relief from heat but also exposed the poor state of the city's drainage network. Flooded roads led to traffic jams on outer ring road, in Banaswadi and near Male Mahadeshwara Swamy Temple near KR Puram.

According to the BBMP, at least 20 trees were uprooted due to strong winds. Tree falls were reported near the BJP head office in Malleswaram, Government Soap Factory near Yeshwantpur, Nandini Layout bus stand, Goraguntepalya, Shankar Mutt near Kurubarahalli, HAL Airport Road, Yelahanka New Town, Banaswadi, Hanumanthnagar, Ali Asker Road, Indiranagar 14th Main and K R Puram.

There was also power disruption in several areas with Bescom flooded with calls from across the city.

Winds with a speed of 64 kmph (35 knots) between 3.45 pm and 3.56 pm swept parts of the city, accompanied by thunder and lightning.

According to the IMD, the city received just 0.4 mm rainfall up to 8.30 pm.

The international airport recorded trace rainfall while HAL airport received 4.3 mm.

The IMD has issued a warning of strong winds, squalls, hailstorms and thundershowers to seven district administrations and airports for a fortnight.

The warning has been issued to DCs of Bengaluru Urban, Bengaluru Rural, Kolar, Chikkaballapur, Chitradurga and Haveri.

"The warning was sent out to airports and DCs and municipalities at 3 pm. It lasts for a duration of one week. It has been issued since maximum damage can happen to aircraft and in cities. These are the pre-monsoon showers which are dangerous," said L Ramesh Babu, IMD-Bengaluru director-in-charge.

The maximum temperature on Friday, up to 5.30 pm was 34.8 degrees Celsius and the minimum was 23.4 degrees Celsius.

The maximum and minimum temperatures at HAL airport were 33.6 and 21.6 degrees Celsius respectively. Maximum and minimum temperatures at Kempegowda International Airport were 33.7 and 22.4 degrees Celsius.

Flights diverted

Meanwhile, two Bengaluru-bound SpiceJet flights were diverted to Chennai following strong winds over the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) on Friday afternoon.
Owing to the strong winds, the runway direction was changed at 3.45 pm, resulting in overhead congestion.

This forced the diversions, a Bangalore International Airport Ltd (BIAL) spokesperson said.

The Meteorological Department's warning that the city could witness more hailstorms over the next week could impact flight landings and take-offs.

An independent Air Traffic Control (ATC) expert said since hailstorm brings ice pellets at high speeds, the likelihood of damage to the aircraft cockpit screen and windscreens are high.

He said cross wind speeds increase during hailstorms, making it tough for pilots to enforce a controlled landing. "Normally, in such cases, ATCs do not take chances," the expert said.

DH News Service

(Published 30 March 2018, 19:04 IST)

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