TAMIL NADU

State capital records poor rainfall

CHENNAI JULY 3. One month into the southwest monsoon, Chennai and its catchment have not seen much rain.

In fact, both the city and the storage points - Poondi, Cholavaram and Red Hills - recorded deficient rainfall in June.

According to the Meteorological department's records, Chennai registered only 22.5 mm of rainfall (till the week ending June 26) against the anticipated amount of 49.5 mm, leaving a shortfall of 55 per cent.

Similarly, the rainfall recorded in the catchment was a little more than one-half of the expected quantum. Going by the rainfall pattern since 1965, the storage points normally received 72 mm, whereas, this year, they had only 42 mm. Last year, the figure was 49 mm.

The highest amount that the catchment received was 635 mm six years ago. But, that year, the city experienced an unprecedented cyclonic system in the middle of June. However, the other `highs' were in 1991 when the storage points received 234 mm and in 1972 (127 mm).

This year, Poondi, Cholavaram and Red Hills recorded 61 mm of rain in May and 56 mm in January. The total average rainfall in the first half of the year was 157 mm. Meanwhile, the Meteorological department does not see anything unusual in the mercury table recording three to four degree Celsius more than the average. ``Given the climatological conditions here, this is not uncommon'', according to S.K.Subramanian, Director, Area Cyclone Warning Centre.

The presence of moderate westerlies-north westerlies delays the onset of breeze, due to which there is an increase in radiation.

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