Based on the onset of the monsoon in Kerala, its arrival in other parts of the country is determined. In Maharashtra, the monsoon is expected to open its turn in Mumbai and the Konkan coast on June 10, three days ahead of the earlier forecast date.
According to the IMD, the criteria for declaring the onset of monsoon over Kerala on Sunday were met: the depth of the west winds extending up to 4.5km above sea level; the increasing strength of the west winds over the south-east Arabian Sea at 15-20knots (25-35kmph); increased cloudiness over the southeast Arabian Sea and the adjoining areas of Kerala; and lastly, the widespread rainfall activity over Kerala in the past 24-hours, with 10 of the 14 rainfall monitoring stations declaring the onset of monsoon over Kerala having received 2.5mm or more rainfall.
In neighbouring Karnataka, this date is around June 5, while in Gujarat and nearby areas, it is expected to be anywhere between June 15 and 20. On Sunday, the minimum temperature recorded in Santacruz was 29.2°C while the maximum was 34.8°C, with relative humidity at 65 per cent. In Colaba, the minimum temperature was 28°C and the maximum was 34.8°C, with a relative humidity of 76 per cent.
Rains and flooding are recurrent problems in Mumbai during monsoon. Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray said Mumbai is ready to face the challenges that the southwest monsoon will bring in its wake. Following a pre-monsoon meeting with key ministers and divisional commissioners, Thackeray said large capacity pumps have been installed at Kurla and Sion to prevent waterlogging, and about 609 road works will be completed by 10 June, while 32 bridge repairs are underway.
Mumbai receives an average of 2,354 mm of rainfall from June to September, with July being the wettest month. While the rains and the consequent flooding are a recurrent problem in Mumbai during the monsoon, this time around the challenges are manifold as the city’s slums, usually located along creeks and in low-lying areas.
Thackeray said a flood warning system has been developed for Mumbai. “It is time to know how much rain falls at ward level and how much water level can rise. “There are 140 rain gauge stations at present and Meghdoot is a mobile app for farmers and real-time information can also be obtained on Umang mobile app,” said Thackeray.