Thursday, April 15, 2010

Rains, gusty winds bring down 36 trees in City

Rains, gusty winds bring down 36 trees in City
Bangalore, Apr 14, DHNS:

Rains continued for the third day in the City, bringing down 36 trees and disrupting power supply in several parts of Bangalore. Gusty winds brought down trees, snapping powerlines and sending both BBMP and Bescom scrambling to clear the roads and restore power supply.

Late Wednesday night, a BMTC bus skidded into a ditch near Raj Bhavan, after the driver lost control while taking a turn, in the pouring rain. A car was damaged in Sanjaynagar due to a tree fall. No injuries have been reported.

In JP Nagar third phase, three massive trees on the same road were uprooted. Thirty six tree falls were reported on account of the high wind speed. Tree falls were reported from Sanjaynagar, R T Nagar, HRBR Layout, Kathriguppe, Nandini Layout, Rajarajeswarinagar, JP Nagar, Koramangala, Jayanagar, Govindrajnagar, Vijayanagar, Rajajinagar, OMBR Layout and Mahalakshmi Layout.

The BBMP held an emergency meeting to discuss on the measures to be taken in the City. According to BBMP officials the Zonal commissioners had been directed by the BBMP commissioner to be alert through the night. The City recorded 37.4 mm of rainfall and according to the Met department, last night’s rain was the beginning of the pre-monsoon rain and is expected to last for a few more days.

The Met department’s website attributed the rains to a trough (elongated low pressure area) running from north Karnataka to Tamil Nadu at 0.9 km above mean sea level with embedded cyclonic circulation over Karnataka and neighbourhood. Low and medium clouds have been predicted over parts of Karnataka with isolated to scattered rain and thunder shower over parts of coastal Karnataka.

Power woes

Power problems got exacerbated during rains, for the fallen trees and snapped branches disrupted several powerlines. Frustrated people called Deccan Herald office, complaining that some Bescom officials were not receiving calls and they could not even obtain information about when power would be restored.

Power had been disrupted since 3 pm in Sanjaynagar. Jagadish, a resident fumed that all the officers in his area had switched off their mobile phones and he could not even find out when the power would be restored. Complaints were received from Vijayanagar, Kempapura, Residency Road, Fraser Town and Kodichikkanahalli. Sharan, a resident of Kodichikkanahalli said, “When I called Bescom, the officials there told me that they do not have enough staff to handle the repair work.”

Bescom officials, however, maintained that they were working round the clock to restore power. A senior official stated that an average of 2 hours was required to restore each line and this was causing power cuts.

“This, mingled with scheduled power cuts has made it worse for the people, but we are working to restore power quickly,” he maintained. To make matters worse, citizens in South, East and West will be faced with water shortage on Thursday due to works on the Cauvery fourth stage at T K Halli reservoir.

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