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Updated: February 9, 2013 11:24 IST

Coimbatore city waits for summer showers

V. S. Palaniappan
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Low storage in SIruvani has forced water managers to keep their fingers crossed for summer showers. File photo: K. Ananthan
The Hindu
Low storage in SIruvani has forced water managers to keep their fingers crossed for summer showers. File photo: K. Ananthan

Officials hope rain will ease water supply situation

Water managers in the City are pinning hopes on summer showers in the catchments of Siruvani to tide over an impending water scarcity during the ensuing summer.

On Wednesday, the Siruvani reservoir had a storage of just 6.66 ft as against the Full Reservoir Level of 50 ft (As against the FRL of 878.5 m, the reservoir storage plummeted to 865.40 and draw of water will be possible only till 863.40).

As against the normal withdrawal of 85 mld, the civic body has reduced the withdrawal to 30 mld. The inflow on Tuesday was said to be 33.15 mld. By linking the Pilloor Scheme’s main pipelines, the civic body has reduced the dependence of many areas on Siruvani scheme by providing Pilloor water.

Siruvani water

At present, the civic body was providing Siruvani water to ward numbers 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 21 and 22 of the 100 wards and the rest of the wards were being fed with water from Pilloor, Bhavani and Aliyar schemes.

The mild shower of 3 mm at the foothills of Siruvani on Tuesday has renewed the popular hope of the water managers that the summer showers will provide some quantum of water to cross the peak summer.

An analysis of the rainfall during the summer from 1995 to 2012 has revealed that there had been an average rainfall of up to 150 mm.

Rainfall during February to May ranged from a lowest of 35 mm in 2001 to a highest of 243 mm in 2005. Invariably, rain during the month of April had been more for a few years, when there had been showers in February and March.

The average of 150 mm during summer was reported in 1999, 2000, 2009, 2010 and 2012. There had not been any rainfall in January in any of the years. The mild showers on Tuesday (February 5), has now renewed the hope of summer showers.

Any amount of rainfall will supplement the withdrawal quantum during the months of March, April and May in fulfilling the water needs of the city.

Quoting meteorological observations, water managers said that the expectations could be an early and beneficial South West Monsoon by the end of May 2013, especially after a very disappointing South West (June to August) and North East Monsoon (September to December) in 2012.

South West Monsoon in 2012 showed a deficit by 45 per cent (district recorded only 85 mm as against the expected average of 150 mm) while North East Monsoon recorded a 35 per cent rainfall (recording 244 mm as against the expected average of 366 mm).

Appeal to people

Water managers also appealed to the people to exercise austerity in utilisation of treated and protected potable drinking water for the next three to four months, so that the water needs come down, slowing down the pace of withdrawal for a safe sailing through the summer season.

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