Saturday, September 26, 2009

havoc wreaked by the rain

Thursday morning unfolded before Bangaloreans with the havoc wreaked by the rain the night went past. But even before they could come to terms with the damage, the downpour returned after a few-hour break.

Damaged houses, water-logged roads and fallen trees on the streets brought home the horror. If the 70 mm rain on Wednesday destroyed property worth crore and severely stretched the BBMP men, the rains on Thursday evening stumped hundreds of motorists on the roads and trapped vehicles galore on flooded roads.
At the APMC Yard in Yeswanthpura, rain water was 10 feet deep in the cellar. This destroyed 400 bags of rice, several bags of pulses and chillies. Basmati rice bore the brunt of rain's fury as many bags containing the costly grain were submerged. At least 36 shops were flooded in the Yard.

A home built on a storm water drain (SWD) in Bhaireshwaranagar near Nagarabhavi collapsed on Wednesday night. The empty home collapsed as the force of the water destroyed the foundation of the building.

Water entered many homes in low-lying areas. "The small drains which have been blocked in our area created havoc. Even after repeated complaints, the authorities have taken no action," said Subbaiah, resident of Bhadrappa Layout.
People stuck in cars and buses had to be rescued by the fire and emergency services at Nayandhalli and near Kino Theatre in Seshadripuram. Across the City, six big trees fell in a span of 48 hours. A tree that fell at Sadashivanagar circle on Thursday blocked traffic for a good 45 minutes.

At 1.30 am on Thursday, people were rescued from a car stuck in rain at the Nayandahalli junction. "We had to rescue four people at the junction from a Tata Sumo stuck along with an empty ambulance," informed a fire and emergency personnel. Overall, the fire and emergency services were called in at eight different places to pump water out of homes and rescue people.

BBMP under pressure
BBMP Commissioner, Bharathlal Meena on Thursday undertook a survey of the badly affected low-lying areas in the city. He visited Mahalakshmi Layout, Gayatrinagar, Vidyanandanagar, Timber Yard and Bapujinagar and directed the officials to provide temporary shelter to the people whose homes were flooded.

The BBMP is providing food and shelter to slum dwellers, where flooding was reported, in the 60 community centres across the city. To ensure long-term results, Meena has asked all the Zonal Commissioners to prepare a comprehensive development plan to tackle future rain-related troubles.

On the agenda are building higher retaining walls for the SWDs and to increase the vent size of the existing ones for expanding the capacity of these drains. With silt accumulating even in drains which had been recently cleared, the BBMP is now trying to think of a way to undertake periodical de-silting of drains.
The repeated flooding of the underpass at Kino Theatre has raised serious questions of the SWD capacity in the vicinity. Terming the KinoTheatre underpass as a perennial problem during rains, Palike officials have now requested help from the BWSSB to provide a gradient or separator to ensure that water flowing from upstream is redirected to other locations.

"Because of the high walls there is no space for the water to flow and it gets accumulated at the underpass. Hence, we have asked the BWSSB chairman to build the separator to clear the area of water-logging," informed a Palike official.


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