Rains and water stagnation affect traffic on key stretches

The rains on Monday may have inundated many stretches notorious for lack of proper drainage facilities, but it also brought cheer to residents who have been hoping for a good spell of rain to recharge the groundwater aquifer.

The northeast monsoon so far has been disappointing both in terms of the rains in the catchment areas of the city’s reservoirs and recharging the aquifers within the city through the domestic rainwater harvesting systems.

Traffic flow was affected on Monday morning as portions of roads including Santhome High Road, Flowers Road, Montieth Road, Jawaharlal Nehru Salai near Koyambedu, MGR Salai (that connects Rajiv Gandhi Salai and Taramani Link Road) and Rajiv Gandhi Salai were under sheets of water for some time. Many roads including Tiruvottiyur High Road became slushy.

“The water stagnated for sometime after the rain. It affected vehicular movement during the morning rush hour,” said R. Suresh, a resident of Choolaimedu.

Chennai Corporation and Highways Department workers were seen pushing water into drains to help clear the roads. Pumps were also used at some spots including at Koyambedu.

The cloudy day also brought some respite to residents who once again have to contend with two- hour power cuts.

As stormwater drains and the sewer system carried the rainwater from city roads, empty plots in the suburbs acted as catchments. For residents like Seshadri of Thoraipakkam whose house has gone below the road level, there is no other go but to continuously pump out water from inside his house. “Last year, I had knee-deep water inside my house. Now, as the water level rises on the road and enters my compound, I pump it back out to a nearby plot,” he said.

However, in some areas such as Kalaignar Nagar in Tiruvottiyur, the plots are getting filled up fast, worrying residents, who have been waiting for their roads to be laid.

S. Babu, secretary, Kalaignar Nagar Residents Welfare Association, said that the road-laying work worth Rs.2.40 crore should have been completed before the monsoon.

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