A day of woes for residents

Fire and Rescue Services personnel removing an uprooted tree from Kaloor-Kadavanthra road on Monday.  

Monday blues turned nightmarish for the city residents as incessant spells of heavy rain, often packing equally vigorous wind, brought them a deluge of woes.

Many places in the city were waterlogged after incessant rain. Heavy rain and wind forced the State Water Transport Department to suspend all boat services for an hour in the afternoon.

KSRTC bus stand and South railway station turned islands, leaving passengers to wade through knee-deep water with their baggage. Vivekananda Road adjacent to the bus stand, used mainly by autorickshaw operators and pedestrians, turned out of bounds owing to inundation.

“Dumping of sediments cleared from Mullassery Canal Road made things worse,” said V.S. Sunilkumar, CPI local secretary, central city area. C.P. Ummer Road, Judges Avenue, M.G. Road, Market Road, S.D. Pharmacy Junction, Veekshanam Road, Pookkaranmukku, Ravipuram, and areas near ESI Hospital were submerged.

An already bad traffic turned worse as rain coupled with fallen trees and branches and snapped electrical lines further slowed down vehicle movement. There was no respite for motorists as all crucial arterial roads, including Vyttila Junction, Seaport-Airport Road, Kaloor-Kadavanthra Road, Banerjee Road, Thammanam-Ponnurunni Road, and S.A. Road witnessed bumper-to-bumper traffic.

No escape

The submerged service roads meant that motorists caught in the traffic logjam along the national highway were left with no escape routes. The side road leading from Ponnurunni to Vyttila Junction turned muddy and water-logged, leaving no room for pedestrians while slowing down road traffic considerably. Water splashed from beneath vehicles made life tough for shops and roadside vendors along the roads.

“The situation, especially in the central city areas, was testimony to the failure of Kochi Corporation’s pre-monsoon cleaning drive. Narrowing down of big drains along M.G. Road meant that there was little time for huge volumes of water left by heavy spells of rain to drain out. The unscientific drainage network does not help either,” said Ernakulam District Residents Association Apex Council (EDRAAC) president P. Rangadasa Prabhu.

An uprooted tree at Kathrikadavu held up traffic along the Kaloor-Kadavanthra Road while another tree fall was reported at Chakkaraparambu Junction. The ongoing drainage works at Market Road turned it into a cesspool.

Tree falls were also reported from other areas, including Pulleppady and Cheranalloor, keeping Fire and Rescue Services personnel busy throughout.

Uprooted trees and branches spelled trouble for KSEB authorities.

They were also flooded with calls over power disruption owing to snapped electrical lines. “So much so that we were left with little time to attend to other complaints, which have now started piling up. Complaints, which otherwise could be addressed in a matter of minutes, took hours and the shortage of hands made matters worse,” said a KSEB official attached to a city electrical section.

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Printable version | Oct 24, 2021 7:41:44 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/a-day-of-woes-for-residents/article24139605.ece

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