WP to receive more rains


Police have advised motorists to use alternative roads to avoid traffic congestion due to a road cave-in near the Kohilawatte junction on the Ambatale-Thotalanga road due to Thursday’s heavy rains. (Pic by Ranjith Wimalasiri)

By Maheesha Mudugamuwa

Heavy rains in the Western Province have brought the temperature down and provided much needed relief from the prevailing heat and humidity. However, continuous downpour caused flooding at a number of places in Colombo and suburbs. Daily life in Colombo was severely affected with the city witnessing massive traffic jams with vital roads being water logged in several areas.

The situation is likely to continue as the weatherman has predicted more rains in coming weeks.

Meteorology Department National Early Warning and Meteorological Centre Duty Meteorologist Darshana Shamil Prematilake told The Island that Colombo would receive continuous showers in the coming months following the activation of Southwestern monsoon.

The city has received a 90.2 mm of rainfall during 24 hours ending at 8.30 am yesterday, according to the Met Department.

Prematilake said the reported rainfall in Colombo on Thursday at 11.30 am was 0.2 mm and at 2.30 pm it was 78.8mm. By 5.30pm the rainfall was at 88.9 mm.

As per the forecast for today, fairly strong winds at times up to 50 kmph could be expected over the country, especially in the western slope of the central hills and strong winds at times in the surrounding sea areas up to 60-70 kmph.

Prematilake said: "Showers or thundershowers will be expected at times in the Western, Sabaragamuwa, Southern, Central and North-western provinces. Fairly heavy rains of more than 75 mm could also be expected at some places."

Showers or thundershowers might occur at several places in the Uva province and in the Batticaloa district after 2.00pm, he said.

Flooding was reported from several areas across Colombo, causing inconvenience to residents and commuters due to the failure of the storm-water drainage system. Pedestrians and commuters were seen wading through water at many locations in the city. Areas around Kotahena, Armour Street, Bloemendhal, Kolonnawa were badly affected by heavy showers as the areas were flooded and heavy traffic jams were also reported.

Traffic disruptions were reported from Kohuwala to Pamankade, Kirulapone to Havelock Police Park, Thunmulla, Technical Junction and Kynsey Road. Tree falling incidents were reported at various places too. Electricity supply was also been affected by heavy rains and fallen trees.

According to Disaster Management Centre (DMC), the areas in Kolonnawa was inundated on Thursday and 439 people belonging to 102 families were displaced; they were relocated to safe places.

The DMC situation report stated that over 1,078,920 people had been affected by disasters including heavy showers, high winds, collapsing of the Meethotamulla garbage dump and drought.

Even though Colombo received heavy showers during last two days, several other districts including Kurunegala, Puttalam, Jaffna, Mulaitivu, Kilinochchi, Hambantota, Anuradhapura, Vavuniya, Mannar, Trincomalee, Ampara, Batticaloa and Gampaha are still experiencing drought conditions.

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