'Relief and rescue' day for Mumbaikars on rainy Sunday

Jun 20, 2016, 08:40 IST | A Correspondent

Sunday was both promising and petrifying; while the IMD predicted that monsoon would arrive today, five people at two beaches were saved from drowning by lifeguards

While Sunday brought some great news for Mumbaikars awaiting monsoon, it also saw some people almost fall victim to the wrath of the high tides.

While some people were seen enjoying rain near Shivaji Nagar
While some people were seen enjoying rain near Shivaji Nagar

The Indian Meteorological Department’s (IMD) prediction yesterday that monsoon should reach Mumbai by Monday comes as a relief for many in the state experiencing drought. On the other hand, the lifeguards saved five people in two separate incidents at Gorai and Juhu beaches from drowning.

Those at Hindamata faced water logging. Pics/Atul Kamble
Those at Hindamata faced water logging. Pics/Atul Kamble

Monsoon’s here!
After pre-monsoon showers provided city with some relief on Saturday and Sunday, IMD said the real deal is close. K S Hosalikar, deputy director-general (western region), IMD said, “Monsoon is very close to Mumbai now. It lingered unusually long in the Karwar region and became a reason to worry. But now, it will reach the city on Monday.”

When asked for the reason behind the delay, Hosalikar said a weather system over the Bay of Bengal caused the monsoon to reach Odisha and Andhra first. “But if you see the data of the past 60 years, on around 8-10 occasions, monsoon has hit Mumbai around June 20. So it is not entirely unusual,” he added.

Meanwhile, pre-monsoon rain made Sunday quite pleasant. Maximum temperature dropped to a comfortable 30 degrees Celsius but the total rainfall until Sunday evening had not exceeded 4 mm with humidity at 89 per cent.

Sporadic showers occurred in Borivali, Malad, Andheri, Dadar up to South Mumbai. Even eastern suburbs like Thane and Kalyan got a chance to beat the heat with rain. Also, Navi Mumbai got an even larger share of rainfall yesterday.

Though light, the showers managed to reveal the standard of preparation the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has done. Despite the civic body claiming that they have installed pumps, built a pumping station at Hindmata and that there’s no way for water logging to happen in this season, it did. The commuters weren’t able to use the service lane due to water logging and this affected the traffic too.

Nice save!
The fire brigade’s first response team deployed at beaches saved two incidents from turning fatal. They saved five people yesterday.

Around 10.45 am, the fire brigade’s lifeguards spotted four people drowning at Gorai Beach. A group of three boys and a girl was sitting on the rocks and fell victim to the high tides. M Walela (25), B Mishra (25), J Singh (27) and D Lalwani (26) were rescued by the lifeguards within minutes.

Singh said, “Since it was low tide in the beginning, we went a little ahead. But later, a high tide came and made it difficult for us to wade through the waters. While we were contemplating what to do, the lifeguards on the beach came and rescued us. It was only a matter of 5-10 minutes. Nobody was hurt.”

In a separate incident, a seven-year-old girl was drowning at Juhu beach around 1 pm. Ankita Yadav, who had gone to the beach with her parents, was spotted drowning. The local lifeguards and firemen rescued her.

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