Delhiites wake up to thundershowers; monsoon rainfall breaches 1,000mm mark
Delhi residents woke up to heavy showers on Saturday morning. Incessant rains lead to a drop in mercury and water-logging in several parts of the city. The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has forecast thunderstorms with moderate to heavy intensity rain and gusty winds in parts of Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, and Haryana during the next few hours.
Southwest monsoon has given highest rainfall in 18 years
The southwest monsoon in Delhi may have been erratic and one of the most delayed this season, but it has given the highest rainfall to the national capital in at least 18 years, 1,005.3 mm so far. This is the first time since 2010 that monsoon rainfall in Delhi breached the 1,000 mm mark.
Normally, Delhi records 648.9mm of rainfall during the monsoon season
Normally, the Safdarjung Observatory, which is considered the official marker for the city, records 648.9 mm of rainfall during the monsoon season on average, according to India Meteorological Department (IMD) data. Between June 1, when the monsoon season starts, and September 10, Delhi gets an average of 586.4 mm of rainfall.
Rainfall recorded in the past few years
Delhi gauged 636 mm, 544 mm, 876 mm, 370.8 mm, and 505.5 mm during the monsoon season in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015, respectively. It recorded 524.7 mm rainfall in 2016; 641.3 mm in 2017; 762.6 mm in 2018; 404.3 mm in 2019 and 576.5 mm in 2020, according to IMD data.
Intense bursts of rainfall pounded Delhi in July and September
Intense bursts of rainfall pounded the capital in July and September, sometimes 100 mm precipitation in a few hours, that submerged roads, residential areas, schools, hospitals, and markets in knee-deep water and plunged vehicular traffic into chaos. Delhi recorded more than 100 mm of rainfall on two consecutive days at the start of the month.
Monsoon pattern is changing due to climate change: Official
Mahesh Palawat, Vice President, Skymet Weather, a private forecasting agency, said the monsoon pattern is changing due to climate change. "The number of rainy days reduced over the last four to five years, and there has been an increase in extreme weather events," he said.
Such spells of rain do not help recharge groundwater: Experts
"We have been recording short and intense bouts of rain, sometimes around 100 mm rainfall in just 24 hours. In the past, this much precipitation would occur over a period of 10 to 15 days," he said. Weather experts said such spells of rain do not help recharge groundwater and lead to flooding in low-lying areas.
Average annual air quality is getting affected: Former IMD official
The water percolates in the ground if it rains slowly over four to five days. In case of heavy falls, the rainwater runs off quickly, a former IMD official said. "The rain washes away pollutants, but since the number of rainy days has reduced, the average annual air quality is also getting affected," he said.