CHENNAI: The turn of the month has done nothing to save Chennai from the wrath of the rain gods, as December dawned, grey, gloomy and as depressingly wet as its predecessor. The city saw nearly 40mm of rain falling through the night, with the rest of day witnessing an even heavier dose. As of 3:30 pm, the city had received another 95mm of rainfall, making December 1 one of the wettest December days in the city’s history.
Chennai drowned yet again — from Mudichur, Tambaram and even Chrompet, to large parts of North Chennai, localities along the banks of the river Adyar and as always, Velachery and Pallikaranai.
The city woke up to inundated subways, water invading homes and snarling traffic jams. In short, it was a frame-by-frame replay of the horrors the city went through during what has come to be known as ‘Wet Monday’.
Chembarambakkam, the city’s main water reservoir and the bane of every citizen living along the banks of the river Adyar, was opened yet again, with 20,000 cusecs water released. As water levels rose in the Adyar river, the police shifted into gear, taking to microphones to warn people of imminent flooding and hence evacuate from the areas. The worst of the lot however, fell on the people who had left during the brief respite from the rain in the morning.
Commuters, however, were rapidly mired in traffic jams on rapidly flooding roads. In North Chennai, commuters faced trouble as early as 10am. Both critical subways in Ganeshapuram and Vyasarpadi were rendered impassable by afternoon. The closure of the two subways resulted in the long-stalled traffic being routed on the newly opened wing of the Vyasarpadi flyover — the lane designed to carry one way traffic was opened for traffic from both directions.
In Nanganallur, the situation mirrored what happened two weeks ago. All three subways were flooded from the morning, with a lonebridge, itself, subject to bumper-to-bumper traffic, being the only way out of the area. “Some houses were also getting flooded by afternoon,” said Ravishanker, a resident of the area. Those living in Palliakaranai and Velachery, marshlands until a few decades ago, were stuck inside their houses yet again as the water quickly rose to knee-level, and in some places, above hip-level.
Many well-meaning companies along the IT corridor allowed employees to leave early. Even with transport being provided by many firms, travelling the last few metres was still an ordeal, said employees. If its suburbs lapsed into the quagmire of traffic and floods the city saw last month, the heart of the city was no better.
People trying to travel from Koyambedu into the city were stuck in traffic for over five hours as 100 feet road was locked into bumper-to-bumpertraffic. Almost all roads leading to Kathipara Flyover were flooded. Employees from Olympia Tech Park in Guindy, home to several large firms, were stuck inside as water levels outside their office rose above hip-level.
As the day progressed, the city saw no relief from the continuous rainfall. Even as power cuts prevented people from charging their mobile phones, they took to social media to complain, curse, provide minute-by-minute updates and even joke about how the city had transformed from a place where people cried for rain, into one that grew sick of it.
Rains that did not let-up for over 15 hours have flooded the city yet again with sewage stagnation, water-logged roads, and many stranded residents. Click photos of how the rains have affected you and/or your area. Email us with your name and locality to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you need place to stay due to flooding, contact the following people who have offered their homes:
n For Kottupuram, Adyar — Naveen 9944200211;
Can accommodate 5 people
For Nanganallur, Palavanthangal — Manohar 9677104342; Can accommodate 5 people
Porur, Poonamalee, Iyyapanthangal — Sugi 9962679191, Sid 8939368220, Satish 9087808495, Karthi 8760033043 Can accommodate 5 people
Velachery (opp TCS) — Shriram 9556200957;
Can accommodate 6 people
Kolathur — Iyyappan Subramaniyan 9444915803;
Can accommodate 10 people
If you are stuck somewhere due to rains and cannot make phone calls due to low balance, drop your number and service provider in the comments section of Facebook page ‘Flats Without Brokers in Chennai’. Shivam Rai (resides in Mumbai) has offerd to do a quick recharge for you.